MURCIA (SPAIN), Jan 27 (Agencies) Indian women’s hockey team put up a spirited fight before losing 2-3 to Spain in their opening match against hosts Spain here.
Udita (12th minute) and Gurjit Kaur (48th) scored for India, while Maria Tost (23rd), Lola Reira (39th) and Begona Garcia (40th) sounded the board for Spain on Saturday.
India used strong attacking strategy to begin the first quarter on a positive note.
The team made the first breakthrough when it managed to earn a penalty corner in the 8th minute but could not convert the shot.
However, in the following minutes the forwardline worked together to support experienced Vandana who created a splendid opportunity for compatriot Udita to score in the 12th minute.
A reverse pass by Vandana was picked up well by Udita who made no mistake in sending it past the Spanish goalkeeper Maria Ruiz to take a 1-0 lead.
In the second quarter, hosts Spain stepped up their game after the initial setback to score an equaliser in the 23rd minute through Maria Tost.
While the second half saw both teams defend well to contain each other from taking a lead, the third quarter completely belonged to Spain as they struck two goals in the 39th and 40th minute through Lola Reira and Begona Garcia respectively.
The fourth quarter remained tense for India as they fought back to make amends to their defensive lapses in the previous quarter.
A tactical approach to their attack saw them win a crucial PC which was brilliantly converted by dragflicker Gurjit Kaur in the 48th minute.
The following minutes were evenly fought by both teams but Spain ensured they upped their defence to deny India an equaliser.