- Manoj Chaturvedi
- senior sports journalist
The Indian women’s hockey team could not get a bronze medal in the Tokyo Olympics, but the courage with which they fought against a strong team like Great Britain will not be forgotten.
India had to face 3-4 defeat in this match, but according to the Indian women’s team, this performance is commendable.
The team, which was also being questioned in making the quarter-finals, defeated the legendary team like Australia and not only made it to the semi-finals but also continued its fight till the end.
With the impressive performance in this Olympics, the Indian team has been successful in getting its name included in the Big League teams. She can come in sixth place in the new ranking.
last Lost match sloppily in the quarter
India needed to give everything in the last 15 minutes to win after Britain tied the third quarter. But perhaps the team could not work on this strategy due to the pressure from the beginning of the front team.
The team was busy defending itself for a long time in this quarter. At the same time, after Britain’s Grace Balsdon scored the fourth goal, the pressure started on the Indian players. She was not able to clear the ball properly and she also found it difficult to control the ball while making the attack.
India’s memorable comeback
Britain’s 2-0 lead in the first 24 minutes of play and Great Britain’s constant attackers looked like the match was going to be a group match. But in the last six minutes of the second quarter, the Indian team looked in a different style.
Looking at this approach, it seemed that India’s victory over Australia in the quarter-finals was no surprise.
During this, India not only took the pressure off themselves by making attacks, but first equalized with two goals from the penalty corner of drag-flicker Gurjit Kaur and then proved their superiority by taking the lead for the first time in the match with a brilliant goal from Vandana Katariya.
under pressure of Britain Defense creaked
Great Britain were not put to the test in the first 24 minutes of play, but the weakness in the defense was clearly visible when India made strong attacks in the last six-seven minutes of the second quarter.
The British defender was seen making mistakes in clearing the ball. At the same time, the Indian attackers worked on the strategy of getting the penalty corner instead of scoring the goal first and this strategy proved to be effective.
Due to this strategy, India tied the first 2-2 by converting the penalty corners found. India did not let the equalized tempo end and Vandana got the ball after reaching the ball to at least three players in the attack made by Vandana Katariya and she was successful in scoring. This goal doubled the spirit of the Indian team.
India’s losing initiative
Britain went into the third quarter with the intention of adopting an attacking stance with the intention of getting level. By the way, Savita Poonia was standing between him and success. But still Great Britain got the advantage of adopting an aggressive approach.
Perhaps during this it was shown that India intends to defend the lead. But this thinking proved to be wrong and Great Britain scored a goal in the very beginning and made the score 3-3.
This goal was scored by Holly Payne of Great Britain. During this, instead of giving passes to the players of India, the ball was snatched from them many times due to the strategy of keeping the ball with them more than necessary.
Due to this, the Indian goal was also threatened in the attacks made. But good for goalkeeper Savita Poonia’s excellent defense, preventing at least six sure-goal chances.
India wasted opportunities
In the last minute of the third quarter, India made an attack from the right flank and put the ball on the goal.
During this, India sought a referral for a penalty corner for a foul against a British player and got a penalty corner, but at this time the team’s specialist drag-flicker Gurjit Kaur was not on the field, so Deep Grace Ekka instead took a straight shot. Variation done. But the player who reached ahead could not deflect the ball and the opportunity to take the lead was lost.
of India wrong approach
The Indian team’s defensive approach at the beginning of the last quarter was going to create problems. This helped Britain to adopt an attacking stance to take the lead.
After defending three penalty corners, Grace Balsden scored on the fourth to take a 4-3 lead.
After falling behind, the Indian game started showing momentum again and India gave full force to get equal. Due to this, some opportunities were also available, but after taking the lead, Britain appeared to be playing more confidently and this attitude proved to be her way to the podium.
pressure in the beginning
From the beginning of the game of the Indian team, it seemed that it was playing cautiously due to the 1-4 defeat in the group match. India tried not to let the pace of the game get too fast.
She was also largely successful in this effort for 6–7 minutes, but soon Britain began to make strong attacks and several times she came close to scoring. But the promptness of the Indian defense and in the end Savita Poonia, who stood like a rock on goal, kept the Indian goalpost from hitting the Indian goalpost with a brilliant defense.
India needed to adopt a slightly aggressive approach to get out of this pressure. Only by doing this he could rein in their attacks by engaging Great Britain in some defense. India was lucky that their goal was not hit in this quarter.
Britain has the advantage of taking an aggressive stance
Great Britain took an aggressive approach in the second quarter as well and it paid off.
In the very first minute, Great Britain made an attack from the right flank to take the lead from the Indian defence. This goal was scored by Elena Sian.
He entered the circle from the right corner and threw a cross in front of the goal and when Indian defender Deep Grace Ekka, standing there, tried to defend, the ball hit his stick and went into the goal.
For India to come out of the pressure, it was necessary that the ball should be cleared from the circle as soon as possible. But many times the players kept putting pressure on themselves by delaying clearing the ball. Due to this, Britain got an opportunity to attack by snatching the ball several times.
Indian team change gearNo effective
After falling behind by two goals, India began to focus on the attacks and they also got the advantage. Due to India’s attacking stance, a rift in Britain’s defense began to appear.
India got penalty corners in two strikes in the last six minutes of the second quarter and both of them were converted into goals by Gurjit Kaur to level India 2-2.
Encouraged by this edge, the game of the Indian team started showing a sudden improvement and it was able to take the lead in the match for the first time.
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