Hockey India League 2017: Kalinga Lancers decimate Punjab Warriors to seal semi-final berth
Kalinga Lancers displayed rampaging form as they decimated Jaypee Punjab Warriors 7-0 to seal a semi-final berth in the fifth edition of the Hockey India League (HIL) in Chandigarh on Saturday.
Chandigarh: Kalinga Lancers displayed rampaging form as they decimated Jaypee Punjab Warriors 7-0 to seal a semi-final berth in the fifth edition of the Hockey India League (HIL) in Chandigarh on Saturday.
The home side, thus, lost its second successive match at the venue.
Kalinga Lancers have been one of the most consistent teams in the league this season and they continued their good show by getting a lead early in the game.
It was skipper Moritz Fuerste who created a penalty corner in the ninth minute of the match but a miss trap by Adam Dixon almost seemed like the chance would go waste. But Dixon was quick to make up for the error by fetching the rebound, only to ambitiously drive into the striking circle beating defenders Mark Gleghorne and Varun Kumar to send a fiercely struck ball past in-form keeper Tristan Clemons. The visitors ended the first quarter with a strong 2-0 lead.
When the two teams met earlier in the league in Bhubaneswar, Kalinga Lancers enjoyed a narrow 6-5 win. The visitors executed their plans to perfection on Saturday, making their intentions of winning the match strong and clear in the second quarter which saw both teams trade penalty corners.
While Punjab Warriors couldn't convert a goal from the seven PCs they earned this quarter, Kalinga Lancers put one past Clemons in the 24th minute. It was German stalwart Moritz Fuerste who was responsible for extending the visitors' lead to a comfortable 3-0 when he successfully converted his seventh PC of this season.
Kalinga Lancers forward Lalit Upadhyay further dented Punjab Warriors' hopes of making a comeback in the second half when he improvised an assist from Billy Bakker to extend his team's lead to 5-0 with an attractive reverse hit.
Punjab Warriors seemed like they had completely lost the plot, their defensive errors left exposed, as Kalinga Lancers went on to score yet another field goal in the 39th minute when Dharamvir Singh deflected the ball into the post after a good assist by Malak Singh from within the circle.
With a formidable 7-0 lead, Kalinga Lancers looked poised for a win in the final quarter by defending their lead rather diligently.
Though the home team won two PCs this quarter, they couldn't make much of the opportunity. The home team's forward SV Sunil converted a field goal in the 56th minute, but a video referral in Kalinga Lancers' favour denied them the consolation.
Adam Dixon of Kalinga Lancers was awarded with a prize money of Rs 50,000 for scoring the Coal India Goal of the Match.
Matthew Dawson of Kalinga Lancers won Rs 25,000 for being the Hero Young Achiever of the Match, while Dharamvir Singh of Kalinga Lancers was declared the Man of the Match and was awarded a prize money of Rs 50,000.
Top Belarus ice hockey official steps down after controversy over threatening players for political views
The Belarus hockey federation had initially signaled Dmitri Baskov could stay on as president, but he told state TV on Friday he was stepping aside to avoid possible further sanctions against the federation if he stayed.
Nilakanta was a vital cog in India's midfield in Tokyo, where the country ended a 41-year-old Olympic medal drought in hockey with a bronze.
The 25 porobables include Gagandeep Kaur, Mariana Kujur, Suman Devi Thoudam and Mahima Choudhary, who have been moved to the senior core group from the junior ranks.