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India wins the Challenge II, defeat Belgium 6-3 (6/27/2009)
--K. Arumugam
India defeated Belgium to lift the Kazan Champions Challenge Cup II held at Kazan, capital of Tartarstan, Russia.

India thus qualifies for the Champions Challenge proper to be held next year. India last played Champions Challenge proper in 2001 and won the bronze at Johannesburg, South Africa. Till then, it has been struggling to enter the Champions Challenge round. This win puts India to this missing launching pad.

Playing like a lion, or lioness, Indian team won all its five matches with a comfortable majority. Its perhaps first time Indian girls won a tournament without losing a match.

The win is also sweet revenge for the girls, as they failed to click last year in the Olympic Qualifier. India finished fourth in a field of six losing to among others Belgium. It is therefore all the more significant that India defeated Belgium twice in this tournament, both on good score. India defeated Belgium 5-3 in the opener on 21st June.

In a high scoring match, India scored half a dozen against 3 by the Belgium side.

Indian captain Surinder Kaur was declared Best Player of the Tournament

Rani Devi scored four goals today in the 17th, 38th, 44th and 54th minutes, while Saba Anjum (20th min)and Chanchan Devi (49th min) scored a goal each.

Indian team also scored many laurels, bagging as many as four awards

Best Player of Tournament: Surinder Kaur
Top Goal Scorer: Rani Devi
Youngest Player: Rani Devi
Most Outstanding Player: Deepika Thakur

Goal Scorers
1) Rani: 4 (3 Field Goal + 1 PC)
2) Saba Anjum: 1 (1 Field Goal)
3) Chanchan Devi:1 (1 Field Goal)

17minRani Devi
20min Saba Anjum
38min Rani Devi
40 min Valeri Score 3-1
44min Rani Devi
49min Chanchan Devi
52min Valeri
54min Rani Devi
55min Boon Jii Score 6-3

Pic Caption:
Top: Victorious coach MK Kaushik
Middle: Rani Devi, top scorer of the Champions Challenge II, Kazan
Bottom: Victorious team at Kazan

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Great work! :)
by Shashank G on 6/28/2009 2:00:28 PM
It's indeed a good news .. and I wish the momentum keeps going .. and they finally go on to qualify for the champions trophy ..!
congrats ---------golden girls --------a real chak de ,indeed .
by Prof. Randhawa on 6/28/2009 1:20:50 PM
congrats ---coach mr.kaushik mr.vasu.sandeep sir .at least ......we got something great .....sitaron se aage jahan aur abhi hamari hockey ke imtihan aur bhi hain .....
by Ram Ratan on 6/28/2009 9:34:31 AM
not much known about the team, wish best of luck,India should build on from this.
by hodi r on 6/27/2009 10:36:27 PM
Thanks , that's great news .You are first one in the world to cover it.Now I can sleep in peace.
by Shreyas Katharani on 6/27/2009 10:35:33 PM
Gr8 news for all indians... i had seen these girls training at b'lore SAI campus... they deserve the 1st place... coach Mr.kaushik sir, mr. vasu sir, mr. sandeep sir, physio vikas sir, doctor jayram sir have put in a lot of efforts... all the best for champion challenge 1... !!! SHREYAS

by hodi r on 6/27/2009 10:37:42 PM
well said