Sharmila Devi was the lone scorer in the game for India (Image Credit: Twitter)
Sharmila Devi scored the solitary goal for India as the junior women's team suffered a 1-4 loss to Ireland's senior side to start its tour on a disappointing note. Despite the loss, India's junior team gave a good account of themselves, holding their own against their fancied senior opponents -- the World Cup silver medallists, Ireland.
In a tightly contested first quarter, it was the hosts who broke the deadlock, scoring in the 7th minute. The lone goal separated the sides at the end of the first quarter. Early in the second quarter, Ireland won a PC, but a smart save by Bichu Devi in the Indian goal denied the hosts a chance to double their lead.
Despite India pressing hard in the second quarter, Ireland's resolute defence ensured the hosts went into half time with their slender one goal advantage intact.
India came charging out in the third quarter, and got their equaliser via Sharmila. The equaliser was the boost the team needed, and a subsequent PC attempt was thwarted by the Irish goalkeeper to keep the hosts in the game.
With India pressing forward to seize the advantage, Sarah Hawkshaw scored right at the death to give Ireland the lead at the end of the third quarter.
From then on, it was a matter of the hosts defending as India looked to score an equaliser in the final quarter. The hosts capitalised on the counter, scoring two more goals to secure the victory.
India play Canada's junior team Thursday. These two warm up matches will be followed by the Cantor Fitzgerald U21 International 4-Nations tournament from May 31 to June 4.