After securing their place in the Olympic Qualifiers second round, the Indian women’s hockey team went one step further and clinched the FIH Women’s Series Finals by defeating Japan 3-1 in the final match in Hiroshima.
Captain Rani Rampal gave India the lead in the 3rd minute before Japan equalized in the 11th minute. After a barren second quarter, India’s top drag-flicker Gurjit Kaur restored the lead for the team in the 45th minute.
India won a penalty corner just before the sound of the hooter and Gurjit once again converted it to end all hopes of a Japan comeback. In the group stages, India took out Poland, Uruguay, and Fiji before showing Chile the exit doors in the semi-finals.
India’s win drew praises from all across the country with the country’s Honorable Prime Minister Narendra Modi also chipping in with a congratulatory message.
Exceptional game, excellent outcome!
Congratulations to our team for winning the Women's FIH Series Finals hockey tournament.
This stupendous victory will further popularise hockey and also inspire many young girls to excel in the sport.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) June 23, 2019
The team expressed their joy by dancing to the tunes of popular Bollywood song, “Sabse aage honge Hindustani.” You can watch the video here:
Humne kaha hai jo, tum bhi kaho! 😉🇮🇳💪#IndiaKaGame #FIHSeriesFinals #RoadToTokyo @IndiaSports @Media_SAI @CMO_Odisha @sports_odisha @FIH_Hockey pic.twitter.com/fgeNn34iZ4
— Hockey India (@TheHockeyIndia) June 23, 2019
The win against Japan will act as sweet revenge as they defeated them in the 2018 Asian Games finals. Had India won the match, they would have been granted automatic qualification for the Tokyo Olympics.
Nonetheless, they have another chance to qualify for the Olympics and will not rue it this time.
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