The Indian women’s hockey team defeated World Cup bronze medallists Spain 5-2 in their third match of the tour in Murcia on Tuesday.

Lalremsiami scored two goals for India while Neha Goyal, Navneet Kaur, Rani Rampal ensure India remained in the lead after an initial setback in the first quarter. Spain struck through Berta Bonastre, who scored twice for the Europeans.

It was Spain who scored the first goal in the seventh minute of the match through Berta Bonastre putting India on the back foot right at the start. But a determined India made a quick recovery with striker Lalremsiami’s fine goal in the 17th minute and then scored in the 21st minute via Neha Goyal to take a strong 2-1 lead.

Navneet Kaur struck a third goal for the team in the 32nd minute that took India’s lead to 3-1. Though Berta Bonastre scored her second goal of the match in the 35th minute that narrowed India’s lead to 3-2, India were relentless in the fourth quarter with skipper Rampal scoring in the 51st minute. Lalremsiami struck again for India in the 58th minute which helped India seal the match 5-2.

Chief coach Sjoerd Marijne was pleased with his team’s performance. He said, “We are working to be more steady in our performance and we are improving match-by-match. This is a process and we need to keep repeating such performances to grow further. I am giving constant feedback on individual performance and behaviour and some learn fast while some need a little bit more time. But overall, we are progressing well and beating World Cup medal winners in their home ground is a big confidence boost for this young team.”

On January 31, India will play their fourth match against Spain.