FIH Hockey World League Round 2: India thrash Thailand 6-0
The Indian women’s hockey team overcame a below-par opening half performance with a robust second half showing to register a 6-0 win over Thailand in their concluding league tie of the FIH Hockey World League Round 2 Event at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium in New Delhi. Profligacy was the order of the day as the home side created several scoring chances early on, but were denied from scoring by a resolute Thailand defence, ably led by their goalkeeper, who frustrated the Indian forwards to no end.
The Indians, who looked more cohesive in their first two games against Ghana and Poland, were loose with their passing play and often seemed to run out of ideas when they got the ball in the opposition ‘D’. The Blue skirts muffed up as many as four penalty corners in the opening quarter and the anxiety in the Indian dugout intensified as they were unable to break the deadlock.
Amandeep Kaur, however, injected some relief into the Indian camp, finally slotted home from close range to give them a 1-0 lead going into the half-time break.
India stepped up their game in the second half
Thailand continued to thwart the Indian raids as penalty corners time and again went abegging. Just when it seemed that Thailand will make it a frustrating day in office for India, the hosts stepped up their game, soon doubling the lead off their tenth short corner after they wasted nine penalty corners.
The Indians took the indirect route, which saw drag-flicker Jaspreet Kaur deliver a pass to Vandana Katariya, whose shot was blocked by the Thailand goalie and it was left to Jaspreet to slam home the rebound. Rani Rampal exuded some individual brilliance, scoring the third goal.
Vandana made it 4-0 in the closing stages of the third quarter, coming up with a superb deflection off a slap shot from outside the ‘D’ by her team-mate.
India scored twice in the in the dying moments of the match, first through Rani Rampal and the later through Jaspreet Kaur.
Despite the win, the Indians rue the fact that they could only convert only two out of their fourteen penalty corners – something they need to work on before they go into the quarterfinal phase on Thursday.