The Indian women’s hockey team may be ranked 12th in the world but has defeated the fourth-ranked Hockeyroos (the Australian women’s hockey team) 1-0 in the first of three Test matches in Melbourne on Wednesday. High on their first win over Australia, the Indian women seem to have a good start.
As the team’s performance level is top-notch now after lifting its maiden Women’s Asian Champions Trophy, the confidence level is also high.
The victory is built on some teamwork of course. Captain Rani Rampal hit the only goal of the match in the 21st minute set up the scoreboard and her consistent aggression in attack and defence locked the match in their favour. And big thanks to India’s goalkeeper Rajani Etimmarpu, who showed fine footwork.
Moreover, this win deserves a special mention because this is also the first time when Indian women have defeated Hockeyroos and marked a historic win for India. After taking the lead, the Indians never lost defence and remained solid without giving opponents a chance to come back in the game.
Hockeyroos were under pressure throughout as India’s midfielders managed to keep getting Rani and Deepika Thakur into play and the skipper, in particular, attacked the corners.
Meanwhile, the Australians fought hard to get into the match in the latter half of the third quarter but rather had a failed use three PCs in the last 32 seconds.
In the final quarter, India had another opportunity to score but the Hockeyroos goalkeeper Ashlee Wells stopped Sonika’s shot.
The Rio Olympics pitch last saw the two countries battling each other, when Australia won 6-1. The next series is on November 25, followed by the third and final Test on November 27.
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