In an unexpected result, the Indian hockey team lost 3-5 to Japan, in the semi-finals of the Asian Champions Trophy 2021 at the Moulana Bhashani Hockey Stadium in Dhaka, Bangladesh on Tuesday. Now the Indians will play Pakistan for a third-place finish on Wednesday after South Korea entered finals.
The Indian team, who are the joint-defending champions, conceded two goals in the first couple of minutes of the match, and never really recovered from that setback. The Japanese team got two penalty corners early but failed to convert. On the third attempt, they got a penalty stroke, which Shota Yamada converted.
Then in the next minute, the Indians conceded another penalty corner, and this time Suraj Karkera could not stop the goal. In the first quarter, the Indians did not manage to penetrate the Japanese circle.
Then early in the second quarter, Dilpreet Singh was able to break the deadlock and scored a goal. Another attack from the Japan side saw them take a 3-1 lead. Later in the match, two more goals were scored by Japan, through counter-attacks.
In the second half, India did manage to pull two goals back, but it was too little, too late for Tokyo Olympics bronze medalists.