Indian women’s hockey team is expected to have a stroll in the park when they take on Thailand in the 6th Asian Women’s Champions Trophy that gets underway at Donghae, South Korea on Sunday.
India have featured in all six editions of the Asian Women’s Champions Trophy – the girls won the crown in the 2016 edition as well as finished runners-up twice in the 2013 and 2018 editions. The Indian eves had finished third in the inaugural edition in 2010 – the only occasion Indian women missed out on a podium finish was the 2011 edition held at Ordos, where they had to settle for a fourth-place finish.
Thailand is making its debut in the Asian Women’s Champions Trophy and is expected to find the going tough against the likes of India, Japan, South Korea, and China. The last time India faced Thailand in any major tournament was at the 2018 Asian Games at Jakarta, where the Blueskirts won it in a facile fashion – running out 5-0 winners – skipper Rani Rampal – who is missing the 6th Asian Women’s Champions Trophy owing to being injured, scored a hat-trick in that game against Thailand.
Thailand would have to produce something out of the ordinary if they are to put it across a redoubtable side like India.