India eves complete series whitewash over Azerbaijan
New Delhi: Indian women`s hockey team completed a clean sweep in their four-Test series against Azerbaijan after notching up a 2-0 victory in the fourth and final match on Thursday.
The Indian women were not at their best but still prevailed over the visitors after they scored twice in the second half through Jaspreet Kaur (44th minute) and Rani Rampaul (68th).
With this victory, India kept their slate clean after having defeated the visitors with margins of 3-0, 2-1 and 3-0 in the first three Tests at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium here.
After playing out a goalless first half, Jaspreet, who missed the third Test due to back pain, put India ahead, scoring on a penalty shot which the home team earned after Rani Rampaul`s shot hit a defender near the goal mouth.
Rani, who had injured her hand and missed the last match, was once again in action in the dying moments of the Test when she deflected in a diagonal cross from skipper Asunta Lakra from the right to seal the match 2-0.
Azerbaijan had their moments and had, in fact, earned their first penalty corner as early as the ninth minute but they couldn`t make it count.
Towards the end of the first half, India too had earned a penalty corner, but Lakra was too late to react. On a counter attack, the visitors too earned a chance to score from a set piece, only to squander the opportunity.
Few minutes after the first goal, India had earned another chance, but failed to capitalise with Jaspreet hitting wide of the goalpost.