Heart-break for Indian Junior Women as they lose to England in shootout

Potchefstroom (South Africa), April 12 : The Indian J or Women’s Team suffered a major heartbreak after England held their nerves to snatch a victory and the Bronze medal at the FIH Hockey Women’s J or World Cup on Tuesday. The Salima Tete-led team showed grit and determination in the regulation time which ended in 2-2 but could not live-up to the pressure of a shootout, as Katie Curtis, Claudia Swain and Maddie Axword scored goals for England in the shootout while their goalkeeper Evie Wood was brilliant in her efforts to stop the Indian attackers from scoring a single goal. Earlier in the match, India recovered after a patchy start where they conceded a 0-1 setback after England’s Millie Giglio scored an unconventional goal in the 18th minute, tapping the ball that didn’t quite connect too well. It was an assist from Emily Guckian which Millie picked up to push it past India’s Bichu Devi, who has been a strong pillar at India’s post through a tournament. Only minutes later, India bounced back with a sensational goal by Mumtaz Khan. It was an assist from Akshata Abaso Dekhale, which Khan pumped into with great aplomb levelling the score 1-1 at 21st minute. The goal lifted the spirit of the Indian outfit who pushed England with solid attack going into the third quarter. India began the final quarter on a positive note with Mumtaz scoring the second goal of the match, taking India’s lead to 2-1. Mumtaz picked up the ball from Sangita Kumari to score. It was an important goal, as England had opened the quarter with a PC to their credit but Bichu was on top of her job to make great saves, stopping the three shots taken from rebound by England attackers. In the following minutes, both teams traded PCs but neither could convert, however a lapse in defence allowed England to create space in the dying minutes of the match which resulted in Claudia Swain scoring a fine field goal, to end the regulation time in 2-2 stalemate. BM

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