Indian Women’s Hockey team ease past Thailand with 13-0 win in Asian Champions Trophy 2021 opener

~ Youngsters Rajwinder Kaur and Mariana Kujur make India debut; earn their first cap with the Senior National Team at the Asian Champions Trophy


Donghae, 5 December 2021: Dragflicker Gurjit Kaur scored five goals as Indian Women’s Hockey team registered an emphatic 13-0 win over Thailand in their first game at the Donghae Women’s Asian Champions Trophy 2021. Gurjit gave India the lead in the 2nd minute of the match after an infringement from Thailand in their defensive third awarded India a penalty stroke.


Gurjit, who scored four goals at the Tokyo Olympics 2020, kept a cool head and put the ball in the back of the nets to give India a 1-0 lead in the 2nd minute. Conceding an early goal put Thailand on the back foot straight away, and Vandana Katariya, the only Indian women’s player to score a hat-trick at the Olympics, scored the second goal five minutes later.


By the time the first quarter ended, Lilima Minz added another field goal in the 14th minute, while Gurjit Kaur and Jyoti scored two more from penalty corners in the 14th and 15th minute, giving India a 5-0 lead.


The second quarter started much the same way as India kept most of the possession giving no room to Thailand to cause any danger. Within the first minute of Q2, Rajwinder Kaur, who made her International debut today, scored a field goal in the 16th minute, and in the 24th minute, Gurjit scored her third goal and Lilima scored another from a PC also in the 24th minute. The Indian team demolished the Thai defence as they struck another PC in the 25th minute through Gurjit, thus giving India a massive 9-0 lead at the end of the second quarter.


Returning from the 10-minute half-time break, India dominated by continuing to make threatening circle penetrations from the left flank. But Thailand dug in deep and defended well for the first six minutes in the third quarter. But Jyoti broke the threshold, scoring another field goal in the 36th minute to exceed India’s lead by 10 goals.


A defensive error four minutes later from Thailand gave India another PC, but this time Gurjit’s powerful flick was deflected by the opposition. A well-constructed move from the middle late in the 43rd minute caught Thailand’s defence napping as Sonika struck in her first goal in the match.


The fourth quarter, which was a mere formality by the time it started, saw Navneet Kaur threatening Thailand’s defence with penetrating runs from the right flank. But Thailand’s defensive troops managed to keep the danger at bay, preventing any further damage to the scoreline.


In the 55th minute, Monika managed to get her stick on a long pass inside the circle, as she deflected the ball into the back of the nets to exceed India’s lead by another goal. Three minutes later, Gurjit Kaur scored her fifth goal in the match from a late penalty corner, adding in the 13th goal for India.


This was India Women’s team’s first match since the historic fourth-place finish at the Tokyo Olympics. In the absence of Captain Rani, who has been rested from the tournament, India was led by veteran goalkeeper Savita.


Indian Women’s Team Vs Malaysia scheduled for 6th December will not be able to play due to covid-related issues, as officially stated by the Asian Hockey Federation.

India will next play hosts Korea on 8 December at 1130hrs IST. 
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