Ipoh:Two late goals by debutant Bharat Chikkara and Tushar Khandekar powered India to a 2-0 win against Argentina and into the semifinals of the 16th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup eight-nation hockey tournament on Wednesday.
In the semi-finals, to be played on Friday, India will meet Malaysia while Australia take on Korea.
The Indian victory resulted in a three-way tie with Australia, India and Argentina all with six points apiece.
However, Argentina were eliminated on inferior goal-difference with Australia taking the top spot and India coming second.
The Indians, needing a win to qualify, left it almost too late as they found the Argentine defence a tough nut to crack. Try as they did, a goal eluded them until the last five minutes when they scored twice.
Given the domination they enjoyed, the Indians should have run up a bigger win, but the Argentine defence too deserved credit for their solid performance before the ceaseless pressure told on their players.
In the first-half, the Indians did all the running, wove all the pretty patterns and had more of scoring opportunities, but the Argentine defenders did not put a foot wrong, literally.