India settle for silver in men's hockey after 0-7 thrashing by Australia in final

Updated on Aug 08, 2022 06:37 PM IST

India were taken apart in the final and settled for a third silver with Australia running out to a 7-0 win and continuing their reign over men's hockey at the Commonwealth Games. 

This is the third time India are losing to Australia in the CWG final. (AP)
This is the third time India are losing to Australia in the CWG final. (AP)

India were unable to stop a relentless Australia from winning a seventh consecutive men's hockey Commonwealth Games gold medal as they were thrashed 7-0 in the final on Monday. Australia put India under pressure from the beginning of the match and, save for a few stray chances, were utterly dominant throughout the game in attack and in defence. This is India's third silver medal at the CWG in men's hockey, having fallen to heavy defeats against Australia in the final in 2010 and 2014.

India's hockey campaign at the 2022 CWG thus ends with a silver medal and a bronze that the women's team won on Sunday after a penalty shootout win over New Zealand.

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India were forced to defend for much of the first quarter and Australia even had a goal ruled out in the early minutes. India struggled to get anything on the ball and eventually, Australia scored their first. India then tried to keep possession but were hardly able to cause the Australians any trouble before the Kookaburras doubled their lead with a magnificient counter-attacking team goal. The score remained 2-0 at the end of the first quarter.

It was more of the same in early part of the second quarter but India managed a sustained period of possession for a few minutes. However, they struggled to put the relentless Australian defence under pressure in this period. Eventually, Australia took back the initiative and got back to back penalty corners. While Sreejesh pulled off a sensational save to deny them the first time, Australia scored from the second and they were 3-0 up halfway through the second quarter.

India then came close two minutes later when Akashdeep's shot was saved by the Australian keeper. It was the first time that India put the opposition defence under any kind of pressure. India captain Manpreet Singh then took a nasty knock and a couple of minutes later, Australia scored their fourth. Captain Manpreet Singh had to be taken off with an injury and there was a small stoppage in play when he came on without completing the two minutes he is supposed to spend outside once he goes off for injury. Almost as soon as the match resumed, Australia scored their fifth goal.

India responded to the onslaught in the first half by choosing to sit deep when the opposition were on the attack. This gave the Australian attackers acres of space to run into and India's attacking potency took a further hit. However, Australia eventually started making errors, with Jugraj failing to convert a chance he got after catching out a defender inside their circle. The Indians were just not able to put enough pressure and eventually, Australia scored their sixth after getting a deflection on a dart of a pass into the circle.

Manpreet was taken off permanently at the start of the fourth quarter and Harmanpreet took the captain's armband. Australia scored the seventh early in the quarter with the Indians completely deflated. India then got a rare chance right after that but Akashdeep failed to deflect the ball into the back of the net.

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