New Delhi: As hosts gear up to seal a place in the title clash against Germany in the 22nd Lal Bahudur Shastri U-21 women’s hockey tournament, it will be a contest between aggression and pace on Friday as the visitors will look to come hard on swift legged Indians.
Indian eves, who have four points from two matches, have so far been able to fox their opponents with their pace and silken touch but the teams consistent failure to convert from scoring position is something that they would want to improve upon before heading into the final leg of the tournament.
Germany, on the other hand, have three points from two matches, having won one and lost one and they would be keen to come back to winning ways after their crushing defeat to the New Zealand in the previous game.
Indians have been particularly found wanting when it comes to scoring through the penalty corners. The youngsters have so far been able to just convert two out of nine penalty corners in the competition so far.
"Conversion is a worry, we got enough chances but we could not convert them," said the head coach, Lt Col B K Subramani.
The coach, however, deposed faith in the players, saying it was good to see the team playing as a unit and implementing the plans on the field in the right way.
"As I have been consistently saying, it is a new team. There is a little bit of pressure on the girls as they want to do well. Even though they have missed some chances they are a committed lot and will try to improve."
Subramani also revealed that the team will look at the footage of their matches so far in the tournament and will try to analyse on their follies.
He held Germany in high esteem saying that they are a good side and will try to come hard on us, particularly after their loss to New Zealand.
The Indian skipper, Poonam Rani, meanwhile, is banking on the skills of her young team to pip the Germans but admits that it won`t be an easy task.
"If they continue to play like this they have a great future ahead. It is really refreshing to see these young girls playing with high level of skill and speed. They have made me believe that we can go all the way in this tournament," Rani said.
"Even though, Germany lost badly to the New Zealand they are the best team in the tournament," insisted Rani, adding that India will have to be much more consistent when it comes to goal scoring.
Germany, meanwhile, would want to improve upon their defence. Though, their forward line is doing well and consistently creating chances they have a lot to worry when it comes to their defence.
They were spanked by the New Zealand 6-2, a result they would definitely want to forget.
"We were weak in the defence and lacked intensity. We would definitely look to improve upon our game before meeting India on Friday. They are very fast and possess a very good technique, it will be a good match," said German coach Marc Herbert.