Speedy Tigresses hold fancied Korea to a draw in Ranchi

KUALA LUMPUR: The national women's hockey team secured an unexpected 1-1 draw against Asian Games runners-up South Korea in the Asian Champions Trophy in Ranchi, India, today.

Nur Afiqah Syahzani Azhar's penalty corner conversion in the 58th minute cancelled out Korea's lead through Seo Suyoung in the 35th minute.

It was world No. 19 Malaysia's first draw against 12th-ranked Korea in six meetings. Malaysia lost the previous five matches.

It was also Malaysia's first point after three matches in the tournament.

The Speedy Tigresses lost 3-0 to Japan and 5-0 to India in their opening two games.

In the Hangzhou Asian Games, Korea, who lost to China 2-0 in the final, outplayed Malaysia 5-0 in the group match.

The Speedy Tigresses will face Asian Games champions China tomorrow before they wrap up the round-robin match against Thailand on Thursday.

Coach Nasihin Nubli was delighted with the fighting spirit shown by his players.

"We made some structure changes, especially in defence, and it paid off well.

"We earned two penalty corners and did well to convert one.

"Earning a point against Korea has given the players' confidence that they can match stronger teams in the tournament.

"I hope the players will also put up a good fight against Asian champion China tomorrow," said Nasihin.

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