Riding on forward SK Uthappa’s twin strikes, the Indian men’s hockey team posted yet another win against New Zealand A in the second preparatory game of the Kiwi tour on Saturday 3 October 2015 in Auckland, New Zealand
The first quarter saw both the teams going on the attack on each other’s penalty area of the field. Indians, with a win on Friday, were high on spirits and in the 5th minute saw SV Sunil entering the D as he passed the ball to Nikkin Thimmaiah. Nikkin’s pass to Uthappa helped the Karnataka player to put the ball into the nets brilliantly as India led 1-0. India continued maintained good ball possession, keeping the opponents defense busy all through with the first quarter ending 1-0 in India’s favor.
Indians started the second quarter on a high as they took over from where they left and were seen in the opponent’s semi-circle trying to score on the opportunities but they could not find the net, leaving the score untouched at 1-0 at the end of the first half.
The third quarter saw it was Uthappa’s sheer brilliance as he entered the D, beating the New Zealand A goalie and defenders and scoring a field goal in the 34th minute to provide India a 2-0 lead. India was awarded a penalty corner few minutes before the end of the 3rd quarter but could not score the goal.
The last quarter saw New Zealand -A being awarded with penalty corner that was effortlessly saved by PR Sreejesh. New Zealand A persisted with their endeavor and finally in the 57th minute, Stephen Jenness scored a field goal, making the score to 1-2.