India defeat Malaysia to win Asian Hockey Champions Trophy

Malaysia´s Khaliq Hamirin (L) and India´s captain Harmanpreet Singh eye the ball during the Asian Champions Trophy 2023 hockey tournament final match between India and Malaysia at the Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium in Chennai on August 12, 2023. — AFP

India has secured victory in the Asian Hockey Champions Trophy 2023 after they defeated Malaysia 4-3 in a seven-goal thriller in Chennai, India on Saturday.

The Blues continued their unbeaten run in the tournament and produced a staggering comeback in the final against Malaysia.

India had a great start as they got a penalty corner in the 9th minute of the game which was converted by Jugraj Singh.

Azrai Abu Kamal scored the first for his side just before the end of the first quarter and made it 1-1, making sure that his team does not trail as they enter the second quarter.

The Malaysian played like warriors in the next quarter and pushed the home side against the wall by scoring two more goals, making it 3-1 in their favour.

Rahim Razie and Mohammad Aminuddin scored for the visitors in the second quarter in the minutes 18th and 28th respectively, giving their team an upper head against the Blues.

However, India did not want to disappoint their home supporters, and decided to charge against the Malaysian and scored two goals in the last minute of the third quarter, with skipper Harmanpreet Singh and Gurjant Singh scoring for the home side and making it 3-3.

The last quarter was the toughest of all, both teams gave their all but it was India’s Akashdeep Singh, who scored the winner for his side in the 56th minute and completed a historic comeback.

Harmanpreet ended the tournament as the top scorer with nine goals, four more than Pakistan’s Mohammad Sufyan Khan who scored five.

India scored 29 goals in the tournament, the most a team managed to do so in the Asian event and with 16 penalty corner goals, they were also the team who managed to make the most of them.

Pakistan finished fifth in the tournament, they only managed to win two games in the event both were against China. They drew against Korea and Japan and lost against the finalists India and Malaysia.

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