Chennai: Harjot Singh shone under the bar as Chandigarh Comets defeated Chennai Cheetahs 3-0 to virtually assure themselves of a berth in the semi-finals of the World Series Hockey.
After taking the lead in the second minute through Mohd Amir Khan, Gurjinder Singh increased the tally when he scored eight minutes later following a penalty corner.
Sukwinder Singh Gabbar made it 3-0 after he scored from a penalty stroke, which was awarded to the Comets for Vikram Pillay's infringement.
With 22 points, Comets are placed second on the points table, behind leaders Sher-E-Punjab (25). Chennai Cheetahs failed to raise their game before the home fans and lacked in all departments, including wasting seven penalty corners.
Pakistan's Syed Imran Warsi failed for the second time running, after their loss to Sher-E-Punjab yesterday. In all counts, it was a pathetic performance by the hosts and the experiments consistently tried by coach Jose Brasa proved to be futile, while captain Brent Livermore was wasted in the defense.
The important feature of the match was Harjot exhibiting his skills to great effect, particularly against penalty corners.
In the other match, Delhi Wizards got their campaign back on track as they thrashed Pune Strykers 5-2 in a 12th round match of the World Series Hockey.
Wizards now have 16 points from 12 games while Strykers remain on 15. However, it was the home team surged ahead in the second minute when Mario Nicolas Almada scored off the melee for the Pune Strykers.
However Upendra Pillay equalised for Wizards in the 14th minute of the first quarter when he dived infront of Strykers goalie to dab the ball in. Having equalised, Wizards came out all guns blazing in the second half with their skipper Shakeel Abbasi scoring a spectacular goal to give his team the lead.
The former Pakistan international dived to deflect a powerful cross from the flank by Philip Sunkel that caught the Strykers custodian unawares as it was angled to perfection. It was the fourth minute of the second quarter (21st of the match).
In the 28th minute, it became 3-1 as Vikramjeet Singh converted a drag-flick in style. In the 32nd minute, Wizards made it 4-1 when Sunkel after entering the striking zone took a powerful reverse hit which was parried by the Strykers goalie but the ball lobbed up.
Victo Singh who was lurking nearby positioned himself well to tap the ball home. Drag-flicker Vikramjeet again showed "Sandeep Singh like skills" as another perfect conversion in the 38th minute saw them go 5-1 up.
Bikash Toppo made it 2-5 for the home team when he converted a penalty stroke in the third quarter