India put up a decent performance against the top-ranked side in the world, Australia, in the ongoing four-nation hockey competition, but they suffered a narrow defeat on Wednesday. They lost 2-3. Hence, there is no scope of loss for India in the remaining matches of the competition. India will hope to get things on track as they prepare to face Malaysia on Thursday.
Malaysia, after sharing points with New Zealand in their last match, will not be an easy team to beat. They are a team on the rise, and have players to help their team emerge victorious.
Malaysia and India were involved in a tough battle in the last Asian Champions Trophy, where the latter emerged victorious 2-1. India will use that match as an inspiration to help them register their first points on the table, which is a must if they are determined to reach the final, scheduled for Sunday.
India are a good team going forward, and build up really well until the final third with the midfielders making some brilliant moves, but it is in the final third that they mess it up.
Their forwards, including Talwinder Singh and Akashdeep Singh, need to convert the half chances they receive. Though India may be a strong team, they have to score field goals, which did not happen against Australia. They cannot depend on penalty corners alone, which is their biggest strength, with Rupinder Pal Singh being in amazing goal-conversion form.
However, India's defence cannot afford to make mistakes on the back, and give away balls, which will open up chances for Malaysia, who can make them count. Malaysia, with their pacy players, can trouble India if they get an opportunity on the counter, where they are dangerous. Malaysia are aware of how strong India are, and they will play some solid hockey, which will make an interesting match, with both teams searching for a win.
Where to watch live
India vs Malaysia hockey match is scheduled to start at 6 pm local time (12:30 pm IST). There is no live TV coverage in India. Australia viewers can watch the game on Fox Sports 1, with live streaming on Foxtel Play.
You can also click here for live streaming of the match.