Manpreet Singh led team beaten 3-2 in thrilling match

Manpreet Singh led team beaten 3-2 in thrilling match

Manpreet Singh led team beaten 3-2 in thrilling match

Down by two goals, Ramandeep scored from India's first shot at goal, deflecting in Sumit's defence splitting cross from the right flank.

They might have nothing other than pride to play for, unlike both opponents they will face in their last matches, but India must leave London with a statement that they can maintain good form beyond just the preliminary stages in global events.

All three Malaysian goals came from penalty corner conversions.

Not so long ago, at the 26th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup earlier this year, Malaysia dented India's chances of entering the summit clash with a 1-0 win. A minute later, Malaysia doubled their lead against the run of play as Tengku Tajuddin neatly deflected in from their fourth penalty corner.

India's goals came from Ramandeep Singh (24th, 26th). It didn't help India's cause with Malaysia winning another PC in the 57th minute but Razie Rahim's flick went far wide.

Malaysia once against proved to be a thorn in India's flesh. They made it through to the quarters by defeating Scotland 3-1 but were knocked out by Argentina by the same scoreline in the last eight.

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Rahim (19th, 48th minutes) scored off penalty corners as the Malaysians knocked the Indians out of the tournament.

A defeat on Saturday will definitely raise question marks over the team's and chief coach Oltmans' progress over the years.

Contrary to the drab first quarter, the next one produced plenty of action the scoring zone at both ends.

Another area which would be high on Oltmans' mind is the unimpressive performance of young Harmanpreet Singh from penalty corners.

Malaysia, ranked 22 in the world, started off well by taking the lead off their first penalty corner, converted by skipper Siti Noor Amarina Ruhani in the third minute at the Fallon Stadium.

Malaysia has always been a thorn in Indian hockey team's flesh and so it proved it again.

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