The inaugural Women’s Hockey5s Asia Cup 2023 came to a thrilling conclusion in Salalah, Oman, on its fourth and final day. This groundbreaking event marked the first Hockey5s Championship at the Asian level and served as the qualifier for the prestigious FIH Hockey5s World Cup 2024. While Oman secured its place as the host nation for the World Cup, the top three teams in this tournament, India, Thailand, and Malaysia, earned their tickets to the global stage. In this article, we’ll delve into the exhilarating matches of the last day and the overall tournament highlights.
Day 4: The Grand Finale
Iran vs. Oman (9/10th Place)
The last day of the Women’s Hockey5s Asia Cup 2023 commenced with a battle for the 9th and 10th place between Iran and the host nation, Oman. Iran claimed the ninth position with a convincing 6-1 victory. ELMIRA Poupash was the star of the match, scoring a remarkable hat-trick. ABBASI Pania contributed with two goals, and RASHIDIAN Zahra added to Iran’s tally. Oman’s lone goal came from AHAD. The Player of the Match award was presented to Olaa Albalushi of Oman, while Amina from Iran received a special recognition.
India vs. Malaysia (Semifinal 1)
The semifinals kicked off with a high-stakes match between India and Malaysia. Both teams were vying for a spot in the final and a chance to qualify for the FIH Hockey5s World Cup 2024. The match delivered a thrilling spectacle, with India ultimately triumphing 9-5. Kaur Navjot showcased her skill with a hat-trick, while Kujur Mariana, Choudhary Mahima, Jyoti, and Toppo Dipi Monika also contributed to India’s dominant performance. On the Malaysian side, MUHAMAD Zati scored twice, while NAZERI Dian and AZIZ Zafirah added two goals each. India’s win secured their place in the final and earned them a spot in the upcoming World Cup.
Thailand vs. Indonesia (Semifinal 2)
The second semifinal featured Thailand and Indonesia, both eager to secure their qualification for the World Cup Hockey5s in 2024. Thailand emerged victorious with a 5-2 scoreline, sealing their place in the World Cup. PIRESRAM Anongnat shone with a brace, while NOO-KEAW Sudarat and SANPOUNG Kornkanok also found the net for Thailand. Indonesia’s goals were both scored by MAULANI Salma. The Player of the Match accolade was awarded to PIRESRAM Anongnat, who played a pivotal role in Thailand’s triumph.
Bangladesh vs. Chinese Taipei (7/8th Place)
The contest for 7th and 8th place featured a closely fought match between Bangladesh and Chinese Taipei. The game was marked by numerous lead changes and fierce competition. Ultimately, Chinese Taipei emerged victorious with an 8-5 scoreline. PAL Orpita was the standout performer for Bangladesh, scoring four goals, while RIYA Airin also contributed. On the Chinese Taipei side, YANG Wan Wen netted four goals, LIAO Pei-Shan scored a hat-trick, and WANG Yu-Chiu added to the tally. With this result, Bangladesh claimed the 8th place, and Chinese Taipei secured the 7th place. LIAO Pei-Shan received the Player of the Match award.
Japan vs. Hong Kong China (5/6th Place)
In the battle for 5th and 6th place, Japan faced off against Hong Kong China in an engaging match that featured several goals. Japan maintained the lead throughout the game, securing a 5-3 victory. NAKASECHI Risa was Japan’s standout performer, scoring a hat-trick, with MURASE Mana and KODA Koko also finding the net. For Hong Kong China, CHAN Tiffany, LAW Ka Mun Melissa, and LAU Pui Sze contributed with goals. This match showcased the growing popularity of Hockey5s, with international participation on the rise. As a result, Japan secured the 5th place, while Hong Kong China finished in 6th. NAKASECHI Risa was awarded the Player of the Match.
Malaysia vs. Indonesia (3/4th Place – 2-1 SO)
One of the most critical matches of the day was the battle for 3rd and 4th place between Malaysia and Indonesia. This match determined not only the podium finish but also the qualification for the FIH Hockey5s World Cup 2024. It was a tightly contested encounter, ending in a 4-4 draw in regulation time. Goals for Indonesia were scored by RONSUMBRE Paulina, MAULANI Salma (x2), and INDIRA Nisa. Malaysia responded with four goals, courtesy of MUHAMAD Zati, MAT ISA Safiqah, JAMES Thibatharshini, and ZAIN Syafiqah in the dying moments of the game. The match proceeded to a shootout, where Malaysia emerged victorious, earning their spot in the World Cup Hockey5s. Malaysia claimed the third place, while Indonesia finished in fourth. The Player of the Match award was presented to MAULANI Salma of Indonesia.
India vs. Thailand (Final)
The grand finale of the Women’s Hockey5s Asia Cup Salalah 2023 featured India and Thailand, both already qualified for the World Cup Hockey5s. The match aimed to determine the tournament’s champion. India showcased their dominance, controlling the game and securing a 7-2 victory. Kujur Mariana scored twice, while Toppo Dipi Monika, Jyoti (x2), Kaur Navjot, and Choudhary Mahima contributed to India’s goal tally. Thailand put up a valiant fight, with goals from INPA Kunjira and SANPOUNG Kornkanok. With this result, India was crowned champions of the Women’s Hockey5s Asia Cup Salalah 2023, while Thailand secured the second place and a spot in the Hockey5s World Cup. Jyoti received the Player of the Match award.
Top Scorer of the Tournament: Pal Orpita, Shirt#10, Bangladesh
Promising Goalkeeper of the Tournament: Solanki Bansari, Shirt#10, India
Best Goalkeeper of the Tournament: Rombiak Iryani, Shirt#1, Indonesia
Rising Star Player of the Tournament: Muhammad Zati, Shirt#8, Malaysia
Best Player of the Tournament: Aunjai Natthakaran, Shirt#11, Thailand
Final Tournament Standings
India, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, Hong Kong China, Chinese Taipei, Bangladesh, Iran, Oman
The Women’s Hockey5s Asia Cup 2023 in Salalah concluded with India emerging as the champions, Thailand securing the silver, and Malaysia taking the bronze. The tournament not only showcased the thrilling world of Hockey5s but also determined the Asian representatives for the FIH Hockey5s World Cup 2024. The event highlighted the talent and determination of these teams as they battled for glory on the Asian stage. As these teams prepare for the World Cup, the legacy of the Women’s Hockey5s Asia Cup Salalah 2023 will undoubtedly inspire future generations of field hockey enthusiasts.