South Korea will look to increase its unbeaten run and solidify its possibilities of making the semifinal when it takes on a laggard China within the Asian Champions Trophy on the Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium right here on Sunday.
Korea almost tasted defeat by the hands of Pakistan on Friday however was gifted a late penalty stroke when veteran Jonghyun Jang’s drag flick was blocked by the person on the put up. Jihun Yang transformed the possibility to make sure the defending champion salvaged some extent from the competition.
Goalkeeper Jaehyeon Kim, too, performed a significant position within the draw, making a triple save within the closing minutes.
ALSO READ: Asian Champions Trophy 2023 hockey: India eyes win in opposition to table-topper Malaysia
Towards China, the defensive position of Dain Son, Hyeseung Lee, and Jang would wish to shut out the areas they provided versus Pakistan and never go away the onus on Kim to bail the staff out.
Regaining fluency in assault might be one other field coach Seok Kyo Chin would wish to tick. Korea’s goal man within the circle Woo Cheon Ji, who tries to sound the board along with his neat deflections, fired a clean in opposition to Pakistan.
The offensive unit surrounding Ji – Cheoleon Park, Hyeongjin Kim, and Manjae Jung – additionally dropped in effectivity and couldn’t penetrate the circle sufficient.
China coach Haiqin Weng has already stated that his younger aspect desires to “study from the expertise and attempt to do greatest’‘ in Chennai. To this tune, Weng would need his aspect to maneuver on from the 1-5 drubbing in opposition to Malaysia.
The aspect acquired off to a flyer when Chongcong Chen struck the primary aim by a counterattack however the spark finally fizzled out. On Sunday, sustaining the momentum can be an purpose for China.
Drag flicker Jiesheng Gao had impressed along with his energy when he struck in opposition to India, and setting him up for a number of brief corners may bode properly for China.
Pakistan vs Japan
Within the second sport of the day, Pakistan and Japan face off trying to find their first win.
Whereas the 2 come to the fixture after incomes some extent of their earlier video games, Japan might be in higher spirits, having pulled off the heist in opposition to the host and match favorite India.
Japan’s first rushers, Reiki Fujishima, Shota Yamada, and Ken Nagayoshi, squeezed out the house for India’s drag sparkles and thwarted as many as 15 penalty corners. Even in open play, the Japanese defence held agency by swarming its circle and nabbing the ball away with last-ditch tackles.
ALSO READ: Asian Champions Trophy: An unheralded debut for Tamil Nadu’s Balaji Kumar
What would fear coach Akira Takahashi, although, is the aspect’s incapacity to consolidate its benefit. In each its video games, Japan scored the primary aim however struggled so as to add extra. The feeder line of Seren Tanaka and Taiki Takade supplied possibilities aplenty however the ending in entrance of aim was missing.
Striker Kentaro Fukuda getting on the rating sheet might be a great addition for Japan.
It has been an identical story for Pakistan, which has been riddled with attacking inefficiency and poor-decision making within the remaining third.
Having fun with an exuberant ahead line, Pakistan has managed to penetrate the circle however has been sloppy in cashing in on the alternatives.
This got here again to hang-out the aspect in opposition to Korea because it squandered probability after probability just for the opponent to attain late and earn some extent.
Penalty nook specialist Muhammad Sufyan Khan’s incapacity to transform has additional compounded the staff’s woes. Pakistan has gone 17 penalty corners with no conversion in its two video games.
Towards Japan, which defended somewhat properly in its final match, Pakistan should arrive at options to remain within the hunt.