Indian hockey women fall to heavy defeat against Germany in opening tour match

Two goals from Pia Maertens helped world No. 3 Germany to a 5-0 win in the first of four matches in India’s tour.

By Rahul Venkat

The Indian women’s hockey team were beaten 5-0 by Germany in Dusseldorf in their first of four matches on Saturday.

A brace from striker Pia Maertens and goals from Lena Micheel, Pauline Heinz, and Lisa Altenburg ensured that the Indian hockey team began their tour of Germany with a loss.

The Indian eves began strongly, earning a penalty corner in the opening minute but Germany did well to save the resulting drag-flick. It would prove to be a rare Indian hockey team attack in the first half.

The Germans dominated possession and created multiple chances soon. It paid off in the 10th minute as Pia Maertens gave Germany the lead. She then doubled her and the team’s tally four minutes later as Germany went into the break at the end of the first quarter with a comfortable lead.

The German women’s team, ranked world No. 3, continued in the same vein in the second quarter. Though India earned their second penalty corner soon, Germany thwarted the attack.

They soon broke upfield and striker Lena Micheel tripled their lead in the 20th minute. The Indian hockey team then went into another break by conceding once more, as midfielder Pauline Heinz struck the fourth goal.

The Indian eves could not manage to keep Germany at bay for long in the third quarter as Lisa Altenburg established a 5-0 lead for the hosts in the 41st minute.

The final quarter was a much more positive performance from the Indian hockey team. They counter-attacked well to earn two penalty corners but the German defenders – as they had twice before – dealt with the drag-flicks with ease to ensure they kept a clean sheet.

The Indian hockey women’s team will look to bounce back soon enough though as they take on the Germans in the second match of their tour on Sunday evening.

Indian eves are yet to win a match since they returned to competition last month in Argentina -- where they played seven games -- following the COVID-19 break.

Lead photo: Hockey India