After four decades Indian women hockey team reaches the quarterfinal in the Olympics. The national team defeated South Africa 4-3 on Saturday.
India is now at fourth place with six points. With this, the national team finished their group A league and will face pool B winner Australia in the quarterfinals on Monday. The top four teams from each group made it to the podium.
The last such success was in Moscow, 1980 when India reached the semi-finals but positioned fourth.
Give credits to Vandana Kataria who scored hat-tricks that favoured India’s victory against South Africa. Kataria scored at 4′, 17′, 49′, with this she became the first woman hockey player to score a hat-trick in the Olympics. While Young Neha Goyal scored the other goal at 32′.
Opponent players Tarryn Glasby, skipper Erin Hunter, and Marizen Marais scored (15th), skipper Erin Hunter (30th) and Marizen Marais (39th) got the goals for the team.
“Today’s game was really tough, South Africa gave us a really good fight. They converted their chances in the circle. Defensively, we can be a lot better,” skipper Rani said, as quoted by NDTV.
Although chief coach Sjoerd Marijne was a bit relaxed but wasn’t much excited with the number of goals India admitted.
“We gave too many goals away, and I think we can score more goals, that is the main thing for today. We did what we had to do, we had to win this match, and we did,” he said.
“Playing in these circumstances, you feel it, the humidity and I think it’s more than 35 degrees on the pitch, it does not make it easy,” he added further.