• Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Hockey

Indian junior women’s hockey team return home after Asia Cup victory

Captain Preeti says they will now aim for World Cup which will be held in Chile

The Indian junior women’s hockey team poses for a photo in Bengaluru on June 13, 2023 after clinching the Asia Cup 2023 title. (ANI Photo)

By: Chandrashekar Bhat

THE INDIAN junior women’s team on Tuesday (13) received a grand welcome in Bengaluru as they returned to the country with their first Asia Cup trophy.

They clinched the title in Kakamigahara, Japan by beating Korea 2-1 in the captivating final on Sunday (11).

Captain Preeti said the team will now aim for the World Cup which will be held in Chile.

Hockey India said the team’s collective efforts led to their victory in the Asia Cup final in which Annu and Neelam scored a goal each.

India started the game on an attacking note by winning a penalty corner in the opening minute of the game, but they failed to capitalise on it. Korea were also awarded quite a few penalty corners but India stood strong in their defence to keep the opposition’s attack at bay. India secured their lead through Annu (22′) who converted a penalty stroke. Korea’s Seoyeon Park scored the equaliser three minutes later.

But Neelam converted a penalty corner to tilt the scale in favour of India.

The board announced a cash prize of Rs 200,000 (£1932) for each player and half the amount for the support staff as a token of appreciation.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated the team on Sunday.

“Congratulations to our young champions on winning the 2023 Women’s Hockey Junior Asia Cup! The team has shown immense perseverance, talent and teamwork. They have made our nation very proud. Best wishes to them for their endeavours ahead,” he tweeted.

(With inputs from ANI)

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