FIH Pro League: India hammer Germany 6-3
A brace each from Abhishek (22nd, 51st) and Selvam Karthi (24th, 46th) and a goal each from drag-flickers Jugraj Singh (21st) and Harmanpreet Singh (26th) helped the hosts seal a convincing win that propelled India to the top of the standings in the nine-team league.
The Indian hockey team continued their winning run in the Pro League on Monday after hammering reigning world champions Germany 6-3 at the Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium in Rourkela.
A brace each from Abhishek (22nd, 51st) and Selvam Karthi (24th, 46th) and a goal each from drag-flickers Jugraj Singh (21st) and Harmanpreet Singh (26th) helped the hosts seal a convincing win that propelled India to the top of the standings in the nine-team league. Tom Grambusch (3rd), Gonzalo Peillat (23rd) and Malte Hellwig (31st) scored for Germany.
Germany opened the scoring via a penalty corner (PC) goal from Grambusch, which was the only goal scored in the first quarter.
However, the picture completely changed in the second quarter with five goals being scored. India found the equaliser as Jugraj took a PC won by Gurjant Singh and placed a low drag-flick between the legs of goalkeeper Alexander Stadler. A minute later Abhishek put India ahead 2-1 as the hosts caught Germany out with a long aerial ball that was missed by Peillat and Antheus Barry, leaving Abhishek with just Stadler to beat and he did that with ease.
Peillat responded just a minute later, picking the exact same spot as Grambusch earlier, bringing Germany level. India were back ahead inside 30 seconds though, as Sukhjeet Singh received an aerial ball and his cross was deflected in at the near post by Karthi. The goals kept flowing as India doubled their lead with Harmanpreet scoring from his first penalty corner attempt of the game, going into half-time with a 4-2 lead.
Germany halved their deficit inside a minute of the second half as Hellwig got in behind Jugraj to get a deflection that goalkeeper Pawan had no hope of reaching. With the pace of the game notably slowed down, neither team added another goal in the third quarter as Germany went into the final quarter, a goal down.
India made the perfect start to the final quarter as Gurjant attacked from the left and found Jarmanpreet Singh on the baseline. His pass found Karthi who scored his second with a smart deflection. India made it 6-3 as a brilliant crossfield pass by Dilpreet Singh found Sukhjeet all alone with just Stadler to beat, but he selflessly chose to pass the ball to Abhishek who rolled the ball into an empty goal.
While Germany play their final match of the mini-tournament against Australia on Tuesday, India will next play on Wednesday against Australia.