Tokyo [Japan], August 3 (ANI): After suffering a defeat in the semi-finals of the ongoing Tokyo Olympics, India men's hockey team captain Manpreet Singh on Tuesday said Belgium played better than his side in the third and fourth quarters of the game.
Belgium defeated India 5-2 in the semi-final and they will now face the winner of the second semi-final between Australia and Germany in the gold medal match on Thursday.
"Definitely, it was tough as Belgium is one of the best teams. We got opportunities, but we were not able to capitalise. They played better in the third and fourth quarters. Our team effort was nice, it is important to capitalise on the opportunities when you are playing against bigger teams. Belgium had good defence," said Manpreet after the match.
"Team played well, I do not know on what basis I was given a green card. We still have an opportunity to win a bronze medal. Bronze is better than no medal. We will have a meeting and we will boost each other. We will try to be prepared to the best of our ability for the bronze medal match. Our focus is on the next match," he added.
India will lock horns in the bronze medal match on Thursday with the loser of the game between Australia and Germany. The Indian boys started well and looked to keep up the good work, but lost the tempo slightly in the last quarter and that is where the boys from Belgium capitalised.
In fact, the last goal was a case of the Belgium players taking advantage as India withdrew goalie Sreejesh and brought in a field player.
The match was evenly poised till the fourth quarter, but in the last 15 minutes, India conceded three goals and suffered a 2-5 defeat. (ANI)