Dabang Mumbai registered their second victory of Coal India Hockey India League (HIL) defeating hosts Uttar Pradesh Wizards 2-1 here on Saturday to keep their semi-finals hopes alive.

Despite the win, Mumbai stays in the bottom of the table with 14 points from six games, having lost four and won two. While Wizards, despite the loss, climb one place to the third spot with 18 points from seven games, having won three and lost four.

The visitors got off to a flying start inside eight minutes of play in the first quarter as Johan Bjorkmann deflected home a strike from Roshan Minz despite efforts from a charging goalkeeper P.R. Sreejesh.

It was a big boost for Mumbai to have got a 2-0 lead via the field goal, that is counted as two in this edition of HIL.

From there on Wizards were in full attacking mode to find the equaliser and their efforts yielded good results as just seven minutes later, the home side got a much-needed penalty corner.

Argentine Gonzalo Peillat was not someone to miss the golden chance as he helped the hosts get their first goal via a penalty corner.

Both teams went into the first break with Mumbai leading 2-1.

But despite efforts from both the ends, Mumbai and Wizards failed to score in the remaining three-quarters to have the score intact at 2-1 in favour of the away side.

The best goal scorer of the day was awarded to Bjorkmann of Mumbai, emerging player to Gurjant Singh, most entertaining Player to Affan Yousaf and man of the match to Mumbai skipper Matthew Swann.

Mumbai will next face Delhi Waveriders in an away match on February 9 while Wizards will take on Jaypee Punjab Warriors at home on February 10. 

    The IANS was founded by Indian American publisher Gopal Raju as the India Abroad News Service. It was later renamed the Indo-Asian News Service.

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