- India and Japan had topped their respective Pools before going down in Semi-Finals
Hangzhou: In their last clash at the 19th Asian Games Hangzhou 2022, the Indian Women’s Hockey Team is gearing up to face Japan in the Bronze medal match on Saturday. Both teams had demonstrated remarkable performances in their respective Pools, and this battle for the podium promises to be a thrilling encounter.
India displayed their dominance during the group stage, going unbeaten with a spectacular 13-0 win against Singapore, followed by a convincing 6-0 victory over Malaysia. A hard-fought 1-1 draw against Korea showcased their resilience, and they sealed their position atop Pool A with a resounding 13-0 win against Hong Kong China. However, their journey took a detour in the Semi-Finals, where they faced a tough challenge and lost 0-4 to China.
Japan, on the other hand, also enjoyed an impressive run in the group stage, topping Pool B while maintaining an unbeaten record. However, their journey hit a dramatic turn in the Semi-Finals, where they faced Korea and battled valiantly to a 2-2 draw in regular time, only to lose 3-4 in a penalty shootout.
As India and Japan prepare to face off for the Bronze medal, both teams are eager to finish on a high note and secure a place on the podium. This match is an opportunity for redemption and a chance to return home with a medal.
Notably,Japan are ahead of India when it comes to head-to-head records. Out of 28 matches, Japan have won 15 compared to India’s 10, with only three games ending in a draw.
Also, India and Japan faced each other in the Final of the 2018 Asian Games and the latter emerged victorious 2-1. This historical context adds an extra layer of intrigue to the upcoming battle.
Meanwhile,Indian Women’s Team Captain Savita shared her thoughts on the match and stated, “We started our campaign with an aim to clinch a Gold medal and played some brilliant hockey in the group stage, but sadly we fell short in the Semi-Finals. However, we are still determined to end our campaign on a positive note by securing the Bronze medal and for that; we will give our all against Japan.”
Adding to Savita’s statement, Indian Women’s Team Vice Captain Deep Grace Ekka said, “Our journey in this tournament has been filled with highs and lows, but our spirit remains unbroken. We know that Japan have a slightly better head-to-head record, but we are ready for the challenge. Our goal is to leave the field with our heads held high and a medal around our necks.”
India will take on Japan in the Bronze medal match on Saturday, 7th October 2023 at 1330hrs IST.
The match will be broadcast live on Sony Sports Network and live stream on Sony Liv.