The Indian women's hockey will face defending champions Japan in the semi-finals of the Asia Cup 2017 tomorrow after registering an impressive 7-1 win in the quarter-finals against Kazakhstan here at the Kakamigahara Kawasaki Stadium on Thursday. India will take on Japan in the second semi-finals, while China will play Korea in another semi-final match.
Earlier in the day, India's Gurjit Kaur scored a hattrick while Navneet Kaur and Deep Grace score a double in India's stunning quarterfinal victory against Kazakhstan.
After an early setback when Vera Domashneva scored a field goal in the second minute of the match to give Kazakhstan 1-0 lead, India made amends when a tactical manoeuvre in the circle won them a penalty corner in the fourth minute.
In form drag-flicker, Gurjit Kaur hardly broke a sweat to fiercely strike the ball past Kazakhstan goalkeeper Guzal Bakhavaddin to equalise. The Rani-led forward line were smart in their attacks as they created penalty corners to put their opponents under pressure.
The plan worked as a penalty corner won in the 16th minute was brilliantly converted through Deep Grace. The following minutes saw Navneet Kaur score back-to-back field goals in the 22nd and 27th minute to take India's lead to a comfortable 4-1 at the end of second quarter.
Another penalty corner awarded in the 41st minute was beautifully converted by Deep Grace that took India's lead to a strong 5-1. Gurjit Kaur was splendid in her drag-flick to convert her second goal through a penalty corner in the 42nd minute to ensure India were on the right path to win.
The 22-year-old Gurjit Kaur struck yet another penalty corner in the 56th minute as she registered a hattrick of goals and end the match in India's favour with a 7-1 win.
(With ANI Inputs)