Former India coach Harendra Singh encouraged the national women's team to improve their goal scoring ability after settling for a 2-2 draw in their first game after nearly a year against Argentina Junior side on Monday.
India displayed their intent as striker Sharmila Devi put the visitors in front in the 22nd minute. The slender goal deficit, however, was cut short by Paula Santamarina (28') before Deep Grace Ekka (31') converted a penalty corner to help the regain lead.
The visitors maintained the upper hand through the third quarter with some brilliant defensive work on show. But couldn't hang on to it as the hosts equalized in the final quarter with a goal from Brisa Bruggesser in the 48th minute.
Harendra, who led the Indian eves to a gold medal win at 2017 Asia Cup, applauded the effort put on show by the visitors in their first assignment after the coronavirus pandemic. He, however, added that the think tank should closely analyse the glitches and work on the areas of improvement.
"In my opinion, India played pretty well keeping in view that they are playing almost after one year due to COVID pandemic. Every team is rusty but it’s nice to see Indian team starting on a good note," Harendra Singh to the Olympic Channel.
"I am sure the think tank will analyse the game and work on the areas where there is room for improvement," he added.
Harendra credited the tactical ability shown by the Indian eves but also highlighted that goal scoring is a major area of concern for the eves.
"India played very attacking hockey and because of that, they were able to get 3 penalty corners in the first half. India scored a field goal and also one through a penalty corner which will give the team management relief. I must give credits to Argentina goalie who made couple of good saves and keep her team in game," he said,
"Tactically, the Indian team was sound but we must improve on converting chances because it will give our girls self-confidence. I am confident the team management have a lot of good takes from this game to implement in the next games," he added.
India will look to put together a stronger performance in the second tour game against the same opponents on Wednesday.