India lose 2-5 to Australia in Women`s 4-Nation hockey tourney

New Delhi: Indian eves slumped to their second straight defeat in the second leg of four-nation hockey tournament, losing 2-5 to Australia at Lloyd Elsmore Hockey Stadium in Pakuranga, New Zealand on Friday.

Jodie Schulz (2nd and 28th minute) converted two penalty corners, while Fiona Boyce (12th minute), Ashleigh Nelson (51st minute) and Georgia Nanscawen (60th minute) scored a goal each for Australia. For India Rani (13th minute) and Poonam Rani (63rd minute) managed to reduce the margin of defeat. India were earlier blanked 0-3 by USA in their opening match yesterday.

Australia took the lead as early as in the second minute through Schulz`s accurate drag-flick. Ten minutes later Boyce scored a field goal to make the scoreline 2-0 in favour of the Aussie girls. India, however, showed great commitment and reduced the margin in the next minute when forward Rani scored a brilliant field goal from the top of the circle.

Australia earned another penalty corner in the 28th minute and Schulz made no mistake in converting the opportunity into a goal, her second of the match.

India made some penetrations at the start of the second half but failed to find the target.

Australia, who led 3-1 at the half time, scored twice in the second half through Nelson and Nanscawen to virtually take the game away from India`s reach.

The Indians had their moments in the match and tried hard to reduce the margin in the last 10 minutes. India earned a penalty corner in the 63rd minute and Poonam deflected home a well-directed ball from Asunta Lakra.

India will now play hosts New Zealand in their pre-classification fixture on Saturday.