Indian women’s suffered a defeat against World Champions Netherlands in their opening tie of Tokyo Olympics at the Oi Hockey Stadium on Saturday.
Despite Netherland physical superiority and their rich amount on a spell with ball possession, India maintained numerical superiority in their defensive shape and cleared every challenge with their gusty and composed passing from deep inside their half rather than panicking under the high press.
Netherlands’ first goal came up from the right flanks and created a nuisance on the Indian half which allowed Felice Albers to poach one in front of open goal. Earlier setbacks did not deteriorate India’s confidence, they created a spell of possession in the Netherland half and were rewarded with Rani Rampal getting a comfortable position in the shooting circle and she blasted the ball toward the extreme left corner of the goal post to level the score.
The Netherlands showed loads of urgency to create another goal-scoring opportunity but Savita and the Indian backline rose to every punches thrown by the Netherland attack in the first half.
In the second half, Netherland earn a penalty corner through a referral and Margot Geffen gave the Netherlands the lead. India opted for a high press to attain the equalizer and hand decent numerical advantage in the Netherland half but the Netherlands punished Indian high liner with a divide pass and quick counter-attack. Felice Albers scored her second goal of the match finding acres of space in the Indian circle to double the Netherland lead, Frédérique Malta found space picking the ball from after an excellent exquisite divide pass from the Netherland transition to add 4th goal fir Netherlands in the match.
While Caia van Maasakker added the final blow by hammering the ball into the back of the net through a penalty corner. Indian eves can take many encouragements from this game which got Netherland on their nerves until they broke free in the second half.
India eves will next face Germany on the 26th of July.
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