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MALAYSIA completed their Group A campaign in the Women’s Hockey Asia Cup at third position following a 2-0 defeat to former Commonwealth Games champions India at Kawasaki Stadium in Kakamigahara on Tuesday. FILE PIC

KUALA LUMPUR: MALAYSIA completed their Group A campaign in the Women’s Hockey Asia Cup at third position following a 2-0 defeat to former Commonwealth Games champions India at Kawasaki Stadium in Kakamigahara on Tuesday.

K. Dhamaraj’s side recorded one win and two defeats to finish behind group champions India and runners-up China, while Singapore took fourth with three defeats.

In earlier matches, World 22 ranked Malaysia defeated 40th-ranked Singapore 8-0 but lost 5-4 to eighth-ranked China.

E. Rajani netted from open play in the 54th minute to hand World No 12 India the lead before Gurjit Kaur scored a second from a penalty corner set-piece a minute later.

Touching on the match against India, Dharmaraj said he is happy with his team’s performance.

“We had five penalty corners with one attempt rattling the India post while another shot was cleared off the goal-line. The girls played very well to hold India in the opening three quarters,” said Dhamaraj.

“However, pressure hit them in the final quarter. India scored from a counter for the first goal before netting a second off a penalty corner.”

Malaysia will face defending champions Japan, the Group A runners-up, in the quarter-finals on Thursday.

“Luck has not been on our side against strong opponents in this tournament. However, I hope our luck will come when we play Japan on Thursday.

“We held Japan 2-2 in a friendly recently and so I am feeling rather optimistic ahead of the quarter-finals. If we beat Japan, we will play either India or Kazakhstan in the semi-finals,” Dhamaraj added.

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