There could be reasons to debate whether India lost to conditions or the opposition but there's no excuse to the missed chances the hosts created in the last five minutes that cost them a 0-1 defeat against Argentina in the semifinals of the Hockey World League at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar.
Argentinean striker Gonzalo Peillat scored the first goal of the match, converting a penalty corner into a flawless game in the opening quarter of the game.
Interestingly India was the only team to beat eventual Olympic Gold medal winners Argentina at Rio 2016. India though unfortunately without star players Sardar Singh and PR Sreejesh.
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India earned two back-to-back penalty corners in the second quarter but Rupinder Pal Singh couldn't make use of either.
In the first quarter final of the day, Argentina, who finished third in Pool A with just one point, scored through field strikes from Lucas Villa (21st minute), skipper Mattias Paredes (29th) and a penalty stroke conversion by Juan Gillardi (34th) to eke out their first win of the tournament. Florian Fuchs (34th) and Constatin Staib (41st) scored the other goals.
India will now play the loser of the second semifinal between Australia & Germany to be held tomorrow.
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