ESB Electric Ireland FIH Champions Challenge I (Women)
Dublin, Ireland - June 18 - 26, 2011

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India versus Spain ends all square

June 19, 2011
India v Spain 1-1 (0-0)

The final game of the day here in Dublin saw a hugely entertaining 1-1 draw between Pool B rivals Spain and India. The result leaves both teams in the bottom two places in the Pool, with Ireland (1st place) and Azerbaijan (2nd) ahead of them.  

The match was enjoyed by a good sized crowd which featured a large number of passionate India fans who cheered loudly throughout the contest.  

India were the dominant force in the first half but failed to open the scoring despite a number of excellent opportunities. Saba Anjum had arguably their best chance of the half when she received the ball in space on the left before smashing a shot just wide of the right post. The Indian team again went close in the dying moments of the half when a penalty corner effort was cleared off the line by Spain defender Silvia Munoz.  

Although India were well on top, Spain certainly had chances of their own in the first period and were denied on two occasions by top saves from Indian keeper Yogita Bali.

India started the second half in much the same vain as they did the first, working hard to create opportunities that would break the deadlock. A reverse stick shot from Deepika forced a solid save from Maria Lopez de Eguilaz, while the outstanding skills from 2010 FIH Young Player of the Year Rani Rampal were a constant thorn in the side of the Spanish defence.

Spain gave a much better showing of themselves in the final stages of match, with Berta Bonastre being the pick of the Spanish attackers. Incredibly, it was Bonastre who gave Spain the lead in the 64th when she scored from a slick penalty corner routine, much to the disappointment of the large contingent of India fans in the stadium.

However, those fans went from despair to sheer joy in the 69th minute when their team won a penalty corner. Following an initial save from Lopez de Eguilaz, Rani Poonam secured a share of the points when she thrashed the ball into the back of the net from a tight angle to give India a hard earned and much deserved point.  

India v Spain 1-1 (0-0)
IND 0-1 ESP – Berta BONASTRE 64m PC
IND 1-1 ESP – Rani POONAM 69m PC

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