Unbeaten so far in the event, a dominant India will have a psychological advantage over Korea having recorded a convincing win over them in the league phase, when two meet in the semifinal of the women's Asian Champions Trophy hockey tournament in Ranchi on Saturday. (Hockey News)
India thrashed Korea 5-0 on Thursday to end the round-robin league phase with an all-win record.
The Indians finished the round-robin stage at the top with maximum 15 points from five games, while Korea were fourth with seven points from two wins, two losses and one draw.
The Indians have been way above their opponents in the tournament and would be determined to continue their winning run.
But with just two wins away from the title, India will have to guard against complacency and can't afford to take the foot off the pedal at the business end of the event.
The Indians have excelled in all departments so far in the tournament.
While skipper Savita Punia-led defence has put up a brave front, conceding just three goals, the co-ordination between the forwardline and midfield was a treat to watch, resulting in 21 goals for India.
India's chief coach Janneke Schopman, although happy, feels the knockout matches will be completely different.
"The team has showcased remarkable resilience and unity in this competition. The victory against Korea in the pool stage was nothing less than brilliant, but we know the semifinals will be a different challenge altogether as there's always additional pressure in a knockout game," she said.
India captain Savita will be eyeing nothing less than a win.
"We will aim to replicate our previous success against Korea and secure a spot in the final. Our focus is on delivering a performance that reflects the dedication and hard work of this team," Savita said.
But going by head-to-head record, Korea hold an upper hand. In 21 matches played between the two sides, Korea have won 12 while India were victorious in six. Three games ended in draw.