India loses to New Zealand in women`s Hockey WC
Rosario: A hapless India suffered its fourth defeat in the tournament, losing 0-3 to New Zealand in its final Pool A match of the FIH Women`s Hockey World Cup.
Skipper Kayla Sharland struck twice in the 44th and 55th minutes, while Katie Glynn scored in the 52nd after India succumbed to a yellow card fever in the second half as first Subhadra Pradhan was sent off then Chanchan Thokchom.
The first half was a goal-less affair even though the Black Sticks were clearly a better side as they took four shots on goal and two penalty corners but in vain.
Krystal Forgesson saw a high shot from the left end up in the back of the net via an Indian defender, but the goal was disallowed as her initial effort was adjudged to have been travelling wide of the target.
Clarissa Eshuis sent penalty corner flick wide of the mark, while reverse stick shots from both Charlotte and Samantha Harrison failed to trouble Indian goalkeeper Deepika Murthy.
In the final minute of the half, a slipped penalty corner routine found Kayla Sharland in acres of space, but the New Zealand captain sent her shot wide of the left post.
After the break, Kayla made amends and scored the first goal for New Zealand in the 44th minute with a stunning reverse stick drive that went through the legs of Murthy.
Eight minutes later, Katie Glynn added a second to delight the New Zealand fans in the crowd, who were soon witnessing a third goal when Kayla struck again with a well placed high penalty corner in the 55 minute.
New Zealand pushed for further goals in the last ten minutes of the match, while India`s chances were limited by excellent Black Sticks defending.
It is New Zealand`s first victory of the tournament, which took them to the fourth place in Pool A and the Black sticks will go for the 7-8 playoff next Friday against China.
New Zealand coach Mark Hager believes his team has fulfilled their expectations for the tournament.
"We had expectations of a top eight finish and we have achieved that," Hager said.
Sharland, who became the first Kiwi player to score against India at a World Cup tournament since Tina Bell-Kake scored twice in 1998, was delighted with the result.
"It is great to come away with the win and while it was not the prettiest hockey at the end of the day we have three points," Sharland said.
India coach Sandeep Somesh agreed the yellow cards affected his team.
"It is difficult to defend against an attacking team when you have players off the pitch for long periods, Somesh said.