Ramanathapuram, Tamil Nadu: The final day of the Hockey India 7th Sub Junior National Hockey Championship 2017 (Women) 'A' Division witnessed a nerve-wracking final encounter between Hockey Jharkhand and Hockey Haryana that ended in a shootout.
Both teams began the final with a mission to win the title. But it was Hockey Jharkhand who took an early lead with a brilliantly converted penalty corner goal by Deepika Soreng in the 14th minute. Though Hockey Haryana played an attacking game, the girls from Hockey Jharkhand were perseverant as they struck again in the 19th minute. A stunning field goal by in-form Sangita Kumari ensured the team took a 2-0 lead. However, their party didn’t last long as a few mistakes by their defenders saw Hockey Haryana score back-to-back goals in the following minutes before half-time. Hockey Haryana captain Reet was in fine nick as she successfully converted a penalty stroke in the 28th minute and struck again in the 31st minute to equalize with Hockey Jharkhand. In the second half, however, both teams pressed hard and ensured neither of them scored resulting in a shootout.
Hockey Jharkhand goalkeeper Kalyani Kindo was on top of her game as she did not let the pressure affect her during the shootout. She stayed calm and saved three goals to see her team through 3-2. Deepika Soreng, Salima Tete and Shammy Bara were the ones to score for Hockey Jharkhand while Deepika and Usha scored for Hockey Haryana.
Earlier in the day, an inspired performance by Uttar Pradesh Hockey ensured they finished the tournament in the third position. They convincingly beat Hockey Chandigarh 4-0. Both teams began on a positive note with disciplined game, however, it was Uttar Pradesh Hockey who converted the chances tactfully with their first goal in the 17th minute. This field goal by Sapna Devi gave her team a 1-0 lead they were looking for and it also put pressure on their opponents. Their second goal game in the 30th minute by Yogita Bora which ensured Uttar Pradesh Hockey went into the half-time with a convincing 2-0 lead. Hockey Chandigarh were given little opportunity to strike in the second half with Uttar Pradesh girls showcasing some tight defence. The two stunning goals by Mumtaz Khan of Uttar Pradesh Hockey in the 50th and 67th minute. With this, Hockey Chandigarh had little choice but to settle for a fourth-place finish.