Japan won its first ever gold medal in women’s field hockey at the 2018 Asian Games by defeating India 2-1 in a tense final. By winning the tournament the nation takes the Asian representative quota while the host quota will be reallocated. The tournament was held from August 19th to August 31st 2018.
Pool A was topped by Japan whom went undefeated, including 4-2 and 3-1 victories over China and Malaysia respectively. Second place came down to goal difference as a 2-2 Chinese comeback against Malaysia left both teams even on points. With a +22 vs. +17 goal difference it was China that would move on to the semi-finals.
Pool B was similarly won by India whom went 4-0 which included a strong 4-1 victory over South Korea whom also advanced to the semi-finals as the second place team.
Both semi-finals were cagey affairs. In the first match between Japan and South Korea it took a penalty corner from Akiko Ota in the 49th minute to give Japan the lead. Japan would win it 2-0 with a second goal by Minami Shimizu in the dying seconds of the match. The other match, between India and China was also decided on a penalty corner when Gurjit Kaur scored on the 52nd minute to give India the 1-0 victory.
The final saw Japan take the lead in the 11th minute via a penalty corner goal by Minami Shimizu. India countered in the 25th minute with a field goal by Neha Goyal. The deciding goal came in the 44th minute when Motomi Kawamura scored a penalty corner goal.
With Japan winning the gold medal at the Asian Games the Olympic host quota has been reallocated to the intercontinental play-off matches, instead of six spots being offered there will now be seven. Other Asian teams will have a second opportunity to qualify at said play-off matches.