Young Tigress go down fighting after Taiwan high

Malaysia celebrate their goal against India in the women's Junior Asia Cup in Kakamigahara, Japan on June 5. India won 2-1. - AHF PIC.

PETALING JAYA: It was a roller-coaster ride for the Malaysian hockey girls’ team in the Junior Asia Cup in Kakamigahara, Japan.

After enjoying a high against Taiwan, they went down fighting 1-2 to India in their second Group A match yesterday.

Malaysia had thrashed Taiwan 7-0 on Sunday after their Group A match on Saturday had to be postponed due to a downpour.

Despite the big win, the Young Tigress knew they faced an uphill task against India who had showed their pedigree by beating Uzbekistan 22-0 in their opening match on Saturday.

However, it was the Malaysians who surprised their fancied opponents by taking an early lead when Dian Nursyakira Najwa Nazeri scored a field goal in the sixth minute.

India replied through Mumtaz Khan in a 10th-minute penalty while Deepika converted a penalty stroke in the 26th minute to give India the lead which remained unchanged until the end of the match.

Young Tigress coach Lailin Abu Hassan was happy with his players’ fine effort although they were unable to turn the tables on India.

“We showed great commitment against India. Their determination showed that they wanted to win and they can compete against stronger teams like India,” said Lailin.

Malaysia need to beat Uzbekistan to remain in contention. Malaysia should have no problems overcoming Uzbekistan in today’s match before taking on four-time champions South Korea on Thursday.

Group A: Malaysia 1 India 2; Taiwan 2 Indonesia 1; Group B: Hong Kong 0 Indonesia 0.

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