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Asian Games 2018
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W: India quells Chinese challenge, in Asiad final (8/29/2018)
--s2h Team
Today was India's National Sports Day. Indian girls celebrated the way it should be: giving nation a joy on the turf in Jakarta. Rani Rampal's wonder girls overcame gritty China in a keenly fought semi-final today to post their fifth straight victory, to ensure a place in the coveted final. India enters Asian Games hockey final after 1998.

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Indian girls were not having an easy outing today. China seems to have got their plan, and tied them down for most parts. Our girls however showed glimpses of excellence at the rear that kept them ready for waiting for their chance. the mental toughness that gave the girls reasons to smile, while in bits and parts they may not be happy.

India started well in the first quarter, got the only penalty corner of the spell, but later allowed Chinese to dominate the entire second quarter. China too got a penalty corner but Sunita Lakra saved a fierce shot.

India was a transformed side after lemon time. It forced a penalty stroke, but the neutral umpire cancelled it. India got three penalty corners in the third spell, but Gurjit Kaur's magic did not work.

However, being on their toes, and keeping Chinese attack in check, Indian girls kept on attacking, and the goal was anytime to come if the course of the proceedings were anything to go by.

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The goal came when 8 minutes and one second left in the scoreboard, off the team's seventh penalty corner. India spent agonizing moments when the Chinese girls challenged the award of goal on the grounds that the pushed ball was stopped outside the circle line.

Chinese coach Moulders played with out goalie for the last four minutes, but the Indian girls withstood the pressure to go on endless celebrations.

India won the inaugural Asian Games in 1982. Won Silver in 1998 when their men's counterpart won Gold. Women's twenty year wait is over now. That they are assured of at least Silver means its third time such a high honour on the Asian Games.

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