Kakamigahara (Japan), November 2: The Indian women's hockey team registered a 7-1 win over Kazakhstan to reach the semi-finals of the Women's Asia Cup 2017 here at the Kakamigahara Kawasaki Stadium on Thursday (November 2).
Drag-flicker Gurjit Kaur was in sublime form as she pumped three goals (4th, 42nd and 56th) while Navneet Kaur scored twice (22nd and 27th) and Deep Grace converted two PCs (16th and 41st) to ensure India remained unbeaten in the tournament.
The Indian Women’s Team have their eyes fixed on bigger goals after their top class performances in the ongoing 9th Women’s #AsiaCup2017.— Hockey India (@TheHockeyIndia) November 2, 2017
After an early setback when Vera Domashneva scored a field goal in the 2nd minute of the match to give Kazakhstan 1-0 lead, India made amends when a tactical manoeuvre in the circle won them a PC in the 4th minute. In-form dragflicker Gurjit Kaur hardly broke a sweat to fiercely strike the ball past Kazakhstan goalkeeper Guzal Bakhavaddin to equalise.
India were off to a steady start, patiently negotiating their way into the 25-yard mark not making hasty forays but waiting for the right opportunity. The Rani Rampal-led forward line were smart in their attacks as they created PCs to put their opponents under pressure. The plan worked as a PC won in the 16th minute was brilliantly converted by Deep Grace. The following minutes saw Navneet Kaur score back-to-back field goals in the 22nd and 27th minute to take India's lead to a comfortable 4-1 at the end of second quarter.
The ten-minute halftime break saw the team return stronger on the pitch as they began the third quarter by winning a PC. But this time, it was well saved by the Kazakhstan goalkeeper. However, another PC awarded in the 41st minute was beautifully converted by Deep Grace that strengthened India's lead. Gurjit Kaur was splendid in her drag-flick to convert her second goal through PC in the 42nd minute to ensure India were on the right path to win. The 22-year-old Gurjit Kaur struck yet another PC in the 56th minute as she registered a hat-trick of goals in the 7-1 win.