The Indian U-18 Women’s Hockey team finished their Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games campaign with the Silver Medal as they suffered a heart-breaking 1-3 loss against hosts Argentina in the Final of the Hockey 5s competition held here at the Parque Polideportivo Roca on Sunday. India’s Mumtaz Khan (1′) opened the scoring in the match after just 49 seconds, but the hosts scored thrice through Gianella Palet (7′), Sofia Ramallo (9′) and Brisa Bruggesser (12′) to secure the Gold Medal.
India started the first period well as they attacked the hosts right from the opening whistle, and were rewarded after just 49 seconds as in-form Forward Mumtaz Khan scored to give her team a crucial lead. However, Argentina put the pressure on their opponents to find the equalizer in front of their home crowd and were successful in their efforts as Gianella Palet (7′) and Sofia Ramallo (9′) scored to turn the match around and help their side to a 2-1 lead at half-time.
The second period saw Argentina keep most of the possession, not allowing the Indian team to find space or create chances. It was Argentina’s Brisa Bruggesser who had the first real chance of the second period in the 12th minute, and the Midfielder made sure that she hit the target, giving her team a solid 3-1 lead. The home team looked resolute in defense, and closed down the Indians whenever they had possession, meaning that the Asian side struggled to find any real openings. Argentina, backed by their crowd, made sure that they managed the game well, as they kept possession and saw themselves through to the final whistle to register a historic Gold Medal victory.
The Indian U-18 Women’s team, on the other hand, also created history as they won the Silver Medal at the Youth Olympic Games on their very first attempt and matched the Men’s team’s feat, who had lost to Malaysia earlier in the day to finish with the Silver Medal as well.