Indian men’s hockey team goes down 2-4 against Australia

Perth: The Indian men’s hockey team went down 2-4 against Australia in their second game of the five-match Test series here.

The see-saw affair witnessed Jeremy Hayward (6′, 34′). Jacob Anderson (42′), and Nathan Ephraums (45′) found the back of the net for Australia, while for India, Jugraj Singh (9′) and Captain Harmanpreet Singh (30′) scored a goal each.

The game kicked off with India showcasing nimble passes and breaching Australia’s defensive line a few times. Nonetheless, it was the hosts who seized an early advantage when Jeremy Hayward (6′) converted a penalty corner with precision. Despite Australia’s continued onslaught, pressing India with relentless attacks and earning consecutive penalty corners, they couldn’t convert them into goals.

Meanwhile, India shifted their strategy to focus on counterattacks, a move that eventually paid off when Jugraj Singh (9′) leveled the score with a perfectly executed penalty corner, placing the ball expertly into the top right corner. Shortly after, Abhishek had a golden opportunity to put India in the lead as he found himself unmarked inside the D area with only the goalkeeper to beat, but his powerful shot narrowly missed the target, grazing wide off the post. The first quarter concluded with the score deadlocked at 1-1.

Throughout the second quarter, both teams maintained their offensive momentum, consistently challenging each other’s defensive setups. However, it was India that broke the deadlock just before halftime. Captain Harmanpreet Singh (30′) stepped up with a remarkable display, converting a penalty corner with precision and power, shifting the scoreline to 2-1 in favour of his team.

Australia intensified their assault in the third quarter, aiming to reclaim their position in the game. Their efforts bore fruit as Jeremy Hayward (34′) netted his second goal of the match from a penalty corner. Subsequently, Jacob Anderson (42′), left unattended in the D area, deflected the ball in to grant the hosts a 3-2 lead. Just before the close of the penultimate quarter, Nathan Ephraums (45′) struck to extend Australia’s lead to 4-2.

To stage a comeback, India exerted full intensity on Australia, repeatedly penetrating their circle. Despite India’s persistent attacks, Australia held firm defensively, thwarting any opportunity for a comeback. As a result, the match concluded with a 4-2 victory in favour of the hosts.

India will take on Australia in their third game of the tour on April 10.

Also Read: IPL 2024: Delhi Capitals Win Toss, Elect To Bowl As SKY Returns For MI

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