Junior Asia Cup: India eves beat Japan to reach final

Junior Asia CupBangkok: India set up a final clash with China in the final of the junior women Asia Cup Championship after they beat Japan 2-1 via a golden goal by vice-captain Poonam Rani in the semifinal here Thursday.

It will be the first time that the Indian junior women will be playing the final of the Asia Cup after four bronze medal performances. The win also guaranteed India an entry in the FIH Junior Women's World Cup to be held next year.

Nine minutes into extra time, forward and vice-captain Poonam Rani scored a brilliant field goal to help India enter the title round.

Earlier, India rallied from 0-1 down to hold Japan 1-1 at the end of regulation time. Japan had topped Group B league while India had finished second in Group A.

Five minutes before the break, Japan took lead through a field goal by Yuri Nagai.

In the second half, India pressed hard and made some good penetrations in the circle.

In the 49th minute, India found the equaliser through a penalty corner conversion by Vandana Katariya.

India continued to play attacking hockey in extra time and Poonam Rani's field goal ensured India entry in the final against China July 7. India won the bronze medal in the fifth Junior Women's Asia Cup in Seremban, Malaysia. In the first semifinal match China beat Korea 3-2. (IANS)