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Manipur’s Sushila Chanu leads Indian team to victory in Asia Cup; Qualify for Hockey World Cup
November 6, 2017: The 25-yr-old captain of the Indian womwn's hockey team, Sushila Chanu from Manipur has made us proud yet again. And this time, she has led the Indian team to qualify for the upcoming Hockey World Cup.
India edged past China 5-4 via shootout to win the women's Asia Cup hockey title here on Sunday. With this, India also qualified for next year's World Cup as Continental champion.
It was skipper Rani Rampal who scored the winning goal while Savita Punia made a great save in sudden death.
It was advantage China as a stick check in the circle saw India concede a penalty corner in only the second minute of the game. However, Savita padded it away and an alert Deep Grace cleared the ball.
A second penalty corner was again padded away by Savita. With the first quarter ending in a stalemate, India came back looking determined to find a breakthrough.
The forwards made several forays into the striking circle. India found the breakthrough in the 25th minute through Navjot Kaur.
Though China launched a counter attack, the Indian defenders were up to the task. The final quarter was tense as China won a penalty corner through a successful video referral in the 47th minute. Tiantian Luo kept low as she improvised to find the right corner of the post, scoring a sensational equaliser for China.
In the penalty shootout Rani scored twice, while Monica, Lilima Minz and Navjot scored once each.
Savita was adjudged Goalkeeper-of-the-Tournament while Monica won the Woman-of-the-Match award.
The result: Final: India 1 (Navjot Kaur) bt China 1 (Tiantian Luo) in shootout. Third place: Korea 1 (Hyejeong Shin) bt Japan 0.
Sushila Chanu rose to prominence in 2013, when she led the junior women's team to a bronze medal finish at the Women's Hockey Junior World Cup at Mönchengladbach. She then made her debut in the senior national team, and was part of the squad that won the bronze medal at the 2014 Asian Games held at Incheon.
Source Inputs: The Hindu