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Defending champions and league toppers Ranchi Rays on Saturday displayed their class, defeating Uttar Pradesh Wizards 6-0 in a Hockey India League encounter.
With 32 points to their kitty from six win and three losses, the Rays are also the first team to have booked a semi-final berth for themselves in the ongoing league.
Flynn Ogilvie (40), Ashley Jackson (47) and Sumit Kumar (59) scored one field goal each to have the 6-0 scoreline in favour of the Rays.
The first quarter saw the hosts playing most of the game either on the midfield or in the Wizards circle. However, the defence line of the Wizards along with star goalkeeper P.R. Sreejesh showcased their class by keeping the Rays’ attackers at bay.
The second quarter was no different from the first and was majorly dominated by the Rays. The Rays pressed hard to score and managed to find gaps too from the defensive line of the Wizards but some outstanding saves from Sreejesh crashed all their hopes of taking a lead.
The first half which was full of action also saw the Wizards making a few attempts but the Rays’ defence was way too strong to be broken. The second quarter also ended without a goal.
The third quarter began with the visitors being more aggressive but were unsuccessful in breaking through the Rays’ rearguard.
Rays on the counter made some quick attacking moves and finally tasted success in the 40th minute through a spectacular field goal from Ogilvie. The hosts led 2-0 going into the fourth quarter.
The final quarter of the game started with Rays pressing hard to add on to their lead but the Wizards put up a commendable defence not allowing them to score. It was in the 47th minute when the hosts scored their second field goal through Jackson, which gave them a 4-0 advantage.
Wizards tried extremely hard to score but the Rays’ defensive wall was too strong for the visitors. The hosts sealed the game to their name in the 59th minute through a field goal from Sumit.