Guwahati: Indian women's hockey team began their campaign in the 12th South Asian Games with a 24-0 mauling of a hapless Nepal in a completely lopsided round robin league match, here today.
The opening match of the Games looked like a practice match with the Indian players scoring goal at will and the home team players appeared to be competing in registering their names in the score sheet at the Moullana Tayabullah Stadium.
Strikers Soundarya Yendala (15th, 52nd, 62nd and 64th minutes) and Poonam Barla (7th, 472nd, 43rd and 51st) scored the most with four strikes each.
Four players -- Rani (2nd, 46th and 48th), Jaspreet Kaur (4th, 35th and 56th), Neha Goyal (14th, 22nd and 70th) and Deepika (53rd, 62nd and 67th), scored three goals each while Gurjit Kaur (21st and 41st) and Preeti Dubey (23rd and 29th) got the other goals for India.
India, who have qualified for the Olympics after a gap of 36 years, are ranked 13th in the world while Nepal are not even included in ranking charts of the world governing body of the game, the FIH.
India play their next league match against Sri Lanka, another minnows, tomorrow. Only three teams are competing in the Games and India are expected to walk away with the gold.
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