India beat South Africa in 2nd hockey Test
By virtue of this win, India now leads the five-Test series 2-0. The home team had yesterday defeated South Africa 4-0 in the series opener.india Updated: Jan 17, 2012 21:42 IST
Star drag-flicker Sandeep Singh converted a late penalty corner to hand India a 2-1 win over South Africa in the second hockey Test here on Tuesday.
By virtue of this win, India now leads the five-Test series 2-0. The home team had yesterday defeated South Africa 4-0 in the series opener.
The Indians scored their goals late in both the halves through Chingelsana Singh (33rd minute) and Sandeep (68th), while Lance Louw (43rd) was the lone goal getter for South Africa at the Dhyan Chand national stadium here.
Despite the win, the Indians were far from impressive today and looked scrappy throughout the 70 minutes.
As expected India coach Michael Nobbs made nine changes in the starting line-up and gave the captain's armband to Tushar Khandekar, who played his 200th international match, in place of Sardara Singh, who was rested.
The changes seemed to have disturbed the home team's rhythm as the Indians looked rusty and out of sorts for most part of the opening period.
Contrary to yesterday's first Test, the Indians lacked sting in their attack and the lack of co-ordination between the mid-field and forward line was quite evidently visible.
The Indians were also found wanting at short corner conversions as they utilised one out of the three they earned.
The South Africans, on the other hand, came out with more purpose today and displayed impressive hockey from the onset but what did them in was the finishing of their strikers.
The visitors created their first scoring chance in the ninth minute and if not for Indian goalkeeper Bharat Chetri, who played today in place of P R Sreejesh, the home team could have conceded the advantage early.
An agile Chetri denied South Africa the lead when he blocked Llyod Norris Jones' hit from close range.
The Indians, on the other hand, created their first real scoring chance in the 30th minute but young Dharamvir Singh shot wide from close range after he was set up by a one-two from S K Uthappa and Vikram Pillay.