The Indian women’s hockey team celebrated a triumphant victory on Sunday as they defeated hosts Spain 3-0 to clinch the Torneo del Centenario 2023 tournament in Terrassa, Barcelona. This achievement came at the 100th Anniversary Spanish Hockey Federation International Tournament 2023, marking a significant milestone for the team.
India, currently ranked eighth in the FIH women’s hockey rankings, opened the tournament with a spirited performance, drawing 1-1 against England and managing a 2-2 stalemate against Spain. The momentum continued with a stunning 3-0 victory over England on Saturday, propelled by Lalremsiami’s hat-trick. This victory not only boosted the team’s morale but also lifted India to the top of the table.
The final showdown on Sunday was highly anticipated, with Spain needing a win to surpass India in the standings. The match began with intense energy as both teams sought to establish dominance. Despite creating multiple opportunities, India was unable to find the back of the net in the first quarter.
The deadlock was finally shattered in the 22nd minute when Vandana Katariya executed a beautiful field goal, sending India into half-time with a 1-0 lead. Both teams displayed robust defensive tactics in the third quarter, with Spain desperately attempting to equalize.
Monika, returning from a green card penalty at the end of the second quarter, made a significant impact, doubling India’s lead with another field goal in the 48th minute. As Spain pushed forward, desperately seeking a response, India’s defense held firm.
Indian defender Udita sealed the victory with a goal in the final two minutes, making the score 3-0 and securing India’s undefeated status in the tournament.
India’s triumph at the Torneo del Centenario demonstrates the team’s growing prowess on the international stage. They not only stayed unbeaten throughout the tournament but also displayed remarkable teamwork, skill, and determination. Spain concluded the tournament with four points from their four matches, the same as England, but India stood tall with eight points from four matches.
Looking ahead, the Indian women’s hockey team will be back in action at the Asian Games 2023 in Hangzhou, the People’s Republic of China, from September 23 to October 8. Fans and followers of the sport will be eagerly awaiting to see if this victorious momentum continues in the coming games. The Torneo del Centenario victory has undoubtedly set a high benchmark, showcasing India’s rising status in the global field of women’s hockey.
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