Odds are even as India takes on hosts Japan in the Semi-Finals of the Women’s Junior hockey Asia Cup in Kakamigahara, Gifu Prefecture, Japan on Saturday.
The top three teams in this tournament will earn automatic qualification to the Junior Women’s World Cup , which will be held in Santiago, Chile from 29 November to December 10 .
Ahead of the crucial match, Captain Preeti expressed confidence and said, “As one of the leading teams in Asia, it is crucial for us to excel in the Junior Men’s Asia Cup. Our performance thus far has been commendable, and we aim to maintain this momentum going into the Semi-Finals.”
“Also, we are aiming to qualify for the FIH Junior Hockey Women’s World Cup 2023 and we are just one win away from accomplishing it, hence, the team will give its all in the Semi-Final against Japan,” she added.
Notably, the Indian team displayed their dominance during the Pool stage, remaining undefeated throughout. They started their campaign with a resounding 22-0 victory against Uzbekistan, followed by a 2-1 win over Malaysia. In a thrilling encounter against Korea, they secured a 2-2 draw. They concluded the group stage with a convincing 11-0 triumph over Chinese Taipei, topping Pool A.
On the other hand, Japan has also demonstrated strong form throughout the tournament, with notable victories against Hong Kong China (23-0) and Indonesia (21-0). Despite a 0-1 loss to China, they bounced back to defeat Kazakhstan 8-0, securing the second spot in Pool B.