Hyderabad: Riding on goalkeeper Helen Innocent’s brilliance, India got the better off South Africa 5-4 via the tie-breaker to win the women’s hockey gold in the inaugural Afro-Asian Games here on Thursday.
The 15-minute extra time failed to produce any result after both teams were locked 1-1 at the end of regulation time. Helen came up with two fine saves before Sanggai Chanu converted the last stroke putting it to the left of the South African cutodian to script a memorable win for India.
After a goalless first half, Jennifer Claire Wilson put South Africa ahead in the 40th minute from a penalty corner but India found the equaliser soon in the 52nd minute, Suman Bala converting a penalty corner.
This was Indian eve’s first major win since winning the Commonwealth Games gold in Manchester last year. But the win in the inaugural edition of the Games here was more significant since they played the tournament without five of their senior players.
Today’s win also rekindled memories of India’s famous come-from-behind win against the South Africans in the quarter finals in Manchester.