Ireland’s FIH Hockey Series ended in disappointment with a 3-1 defeat by an impressive Korea in Sunday’s final.
After a tight opening half, Kim Hyunji made the breakthrough on 46 minutes before Cheon Eunbi doubled the lead.
Nicci Daly’s late goal ensured a tense finish before Kang Jina sealed the win at Ireland pushed forward.
The defeat has no bearing on Ireland’s Olympic ambitions, with the World Cup finalists having already secured their place in the qualifiers.
The stars of the first half were Korean goalkeeper Jang Soo Ji and her opposite number Ayeisha McFerran, both of whom sprung into action when required to frustrate attacks from the opposition.
Deirdre Duke, Chloe Watkins and Ann O’Flanagan all had goal-bound efforts stopped while McFerran dived low to her right to keep out Eunji Cho’s strike.
O’Flanagan, who was named player of the tournament, thought she had added a seventh goal to her competition tally when she fired home from a penalty corner only for the referee to disallow the effort for obstruction in the build-up.
In the second period it was Korea who looked the more likely to break the deadlock, with Kim finally finding a way through after a sweeping move down the right.
With five minutes to go Cheon drilled a low effort into the corner to seemingly put the game out of Ireland reach, but when Daly prodded home a rebound from close range the home crowd lifted sensing an unlikely late comeback.
However Korea held their nerve an took advantage of Ireland’s decision to pull their goalkeeper in favour of another outfield player as Kang finished into an empty net.