The Indian women’s hockey team have placed fourth in the Olympics levelling their best finish since 1980.
Great Britain had begun the game on the front foot catching India on their heels early on in the first quarter. Great Britain had all sides of the field covered and were all over the Indian defence calling upon the Indian goalkeeper Savita Punia to stay solid which she so evidently did by denying both Elena Rayer and Sarah Jones at close range to end the first quarter.
The second quarter was packed with goals from both sides. Seconds into the second quarter and the British forward Elena Rayer came up with a brilliant run on the right flank to enter the circle the see her cross being deflected into the goal by India’s Deep Grace.
Indian soon found themselves in more trouble as Midfielder Nisha got herself shown a green card. India going 10 players down opened up the spaces for Great Britain to eventually find the back of the net in the 24th minute. India was quick to respond to the pressure having won two penalty corners in the 25th and 26th minute which were both converted by the lead drag-flicker, Gurjit Kaur. Towards the end of the second quarter, Vandana Katariya found herself in a great position right in front of the British goal to hit the back of the net making the quarter a five-goal thriller in the favour of India.
29' Another one!!! 😍😍
A great slap from Vandana Katariya and the ball goes inside the goalpost.
— Hockey India (@TheHockeyIndia) August 6, 2021
Five minutes into the third quarter and chaos inside the Indian circle eventually led to an equaliser by the British skipper Hollie Pearne-Webb. The game seemed more even in the quarter but the British were more threatening in their attack. This called upon Savita Punia to stay solid yet again to defend the Indan goal.
The fourth quarter happened to be very demanding for India as they now seemed to be on their heels and to add to that they went 10 players down for seven minutes due to a rough challenge by Udita leading to a yellow card (out for 5 minutes) and soon after Sharmila Devi received a green card (out for 2 minutes). India found a player down to be very difficult to cope up with and to only be caught out and concede a penalty corner which was converted by Grace Balsdon to give Great Britain the lead. They managed to hold on to their lead to finally secure their third consecutive medal in the Olympics.
The heroics of the Indian team gathered support and praises from their opponents and all over the country.
— Great Britain Hockey (@GBHockey) August 6, 2021