Valencia : The Indian women’s hockey team was held to a goalless draw by Spain in their first match of the Valencia Test series here Sunday. Though both teams failed to score, a big positive from India’s point of view was the strong performance by the defenders. Opening the game on a high, Indian women put in all efforts to find gaps in the opponents’ defence.
But Spain put up a strong defence — besides the wayward Indian attackers regularly sounded the goal posts only. Known for their counter-attacks, India had a couple of good scoring chances, both being field goal opportunities, but they failed to convert them. Mid-fielder Ritu Rani-led India — with their equally strong defence — ensured that all efforts to score by Spain were cleared and they had no opportunity to beat the Indian goalie.
Punam Barla and Renuka Yadav debuted for the national team. The next game of the series will be played Feb 16.
The series is in preparation for the Hockey World League Round 2, to be held in New Delhi March 7-15.