India overwhelm South Africa 10-2 for second time in FIH Hockey Pro League

India overwhelm South Africa 10-2 for second time in FIH Hockey Pro League

New Delhi, February 13, 2022

Rattled by Saturday's shock defeat to France, India pumped in all their pent-up frustration on South Africa thrashing the hosts 10-2 for the second time in the FIH Hockey Pro League at Potchefstroom on Sunday.

Riding on drag flick specialist Harmanpreet Singh‘s four goals (36', 52', 60', 60'), India dominated the match as they repeated the 10-2 score line they had posted against the hosts in the first leg match on February 9.

Surender Kumar (15'), Shilanand Lakra (27', 48'), Mandeep Singh (28'), Sumit (45') and Shamsher Singh (56') were the other goal scorers while, for South Africa, Daniel Bell (12') and Connor Beauchamp (53') were the goal getters.

India were quick to create a scoring opportunity through a penalty corner in the very first minute but drag flicker Harmanpreet's drive was well blocked by the South African defenders.

The hosts surprised their rivals when Cassiem brothers worked their skills to earn a their first penalty corner of the match. In a re-take, Daniel Bell struck a fine goal to put his team ahead by 1-0 in the 12th minute.

India were quick to reply when Surender Kumar pumped a brilliant field goal in the 15th minute.

South Africa showed great intent in the second quarter, but an alert Indian defence foiled all their attacks. In the 24th minute, experienced goalkeeper P R Sreejesh came up with a fine save when South Africa were awarded a penalty corner.

In the following minutes, Shilanand Lakra scored from a good assist by Shamsher Singh while Mandeep Singh scored India's third goal and put his team ahead by a comfortable 3-1 lead.

After the 10-minute half-time break, South Africa tried to bounce back with some potent attack. They mounted pressure and were awarded a penalty stroke following an infringement, but Krishan Pathak made a superb save.

In the following minutes, Pathak saved a flurry of shots on goal by South African attackers, not allowing any room for a goal. While the hosts continued to dominant with ball possession, they could not succeed in converting goals. India, in the meantime, scored through Harmanpreet Singh's draglfick in the 36th minute followed by a goal from Sumit that put India ahead by 5-1.

They amassed five more goals in the final quarter through Shilanand (48') and Harmanpreet (52', 60', 60') and Shamsher Singh (56').

South Africa scored through a PC well-converted by Connor Beauchamp in the 53rd minute to make it 10-2.

India will next play against Spain on 26th and 27th February in the home-leg of the league. The double-header will be held at the Kalinga Hockey Stadium in Bhubaneswar, Odisha.

NNN

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