Tokyo, August 20: After a 1-2 loss against New Zealand in their second match of the Olympic Test Event, the Indian men's hockey team booked their place in the final by defeating Japan 6-3 in their final round-robin clash held at the Oi Hockey Stadium on Tuesday. Mandeep Singh (9', 29', 30'), Nilakanta Sharma (3'), Nilam Sanjeep Xess (7') and Gurjant Singh (41') scored for India, while Kentaro Fukuda (25'), Kenta Tanaka (36') and Kazuma Murata (52') scored the goals for Japan. Indian Women's Hockey Team Beat Japan in Olympic Test Event After Gurjit Kaur Scores a Brace.
India continued their attacking game in the second quarter with Jarmanpreet taking a shot on goal, but putting it wide of the post.
Captain Harmanpreet Singh had a shot on target, but the Japanese goalkeeper Takashi Yoshikawa pulled off a brilliant save. Japan managed to open their account through a field goal by Kentaro Fukuda in the 25th minute, but Mandeep scored two field goals in quick succession to help India take a massive lead at 5-1. The Indian vice-captain scored just before the half-time whistle in the 29th and 30th minutes.
Japan started the third quarter on an aggressive note. They took a shot on goal, which was blocked out brilliantly by goalkeeper Krishan Pathak. However, the Japanese team kept putting pressure on the Indian defence unit and found a field goal through Kenta Tanaka in the 36th minute. India didn't let the momentum shift towards the Japanese side as forward Gurjant Singh found the back of the net in the 41st minute to make it 6-2 which put the World No. 5 side in a dominant position at the end of the third quarter.
Japan attacked the Indian defence in the fourth quarter and scored their third goal through Kazuma Murata in the 52nd minute. India were awarded a penalty corner with five minutes left on the clock, but the shot went wide off the post. India saved a penalty corner in the dying minutes of the match and ensured their place in the final against New Zealand to be played on Wednesday.