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Hockey: India held 1-1 by S Korea in Asian Champions Trophy hockey

Kuantan (Malaysia), Oct 22 (IANS) India drew 1-1 with South Korea in their second match of the Asian Champions Trophy hockey tournament here on Saturday.

For India, Lalit Upadhyay equalised in the 33rd minute for India after Junwoo Jeong had given the 1-0 lead to South Korea in the 10th minute.

India started the proceeding on a positive note as Talwinder Singh penetrated the Korean defence. He made two shots from close range but Korean goalkeeper Dong Doopyo made a double save.

India, however did not gave up and held the ball in the midfield to prepare for another attack. But the Koreans replied with the counter-attacks.

The failed chance came when Jasjit Kular gave a loose pass to custodian P.R. Sreejesh and the Korean attacker intercepted the ball.

In the 10th minute, the sloppy marking by India resulted in a goal as Junwoo Jeong scored from the edge of the D to give his team a vital lead. An error in passing by defender Rupinder Pal Singh gave South Korea a chance to counter-attack and Jeong pounced on ball to score.

The second quarter saw some early penetration by India as Sardar Singh injected the ball close to the goal post and Rupinder slammed hard, but the Korean goalkeeper got his hand out and saved.

The blue sticks also got their first penalty corner of the match but Korean goalkeeper Doopyo made an easy save of a flick that was direct.

India’s circle penetration was 15 while Korea have managed only five but yet it was Korea who lead till the end of the second quarter.

After giving the initial space to India in the second quarter, the Koreans came back strongly into the third but it was India which proved themselves superior and scored an equaliser in the 33rd minute.

Nikkin Thimmaiah started the play from the right and bulldozed through the Korean defence running from the right flag to pass the ball to Upadhyay, who was positioned at the edge of the D and after a couple of fumble, Lalit found the goal with the reverse stick.

Several other chances including penalty corners came in the dying minutes of the third quarter but India failed to score.

The fourth quarter saw some great work as both teams counter attacked each other But with less than 10 minutes in the match, Surender Kumar was given a green card and Korea earned their third PC but it was stopped by Sreejesh to keep it 1-1.

Women’s hockey team departs for Asian Champions Trophy

New Delhi, Oct 21 (IANS) India’s women’s hockey team on Friday departed for the Asian champions Trophy in Singapore, starting from October 29.

The squad, which was training at the Sports Authority of India (SAI) centre in Bhopal will be led by forward Vandana Katariya.

The tournament features the best five teams from Asia — Japan, China, South Korea, Malaysia and India — who will play in a round-robin format, followed by the bronze and gold medal matches.

Speaking about their departure for the tournament, India head coach Neil Hawgood said: “After the Olympics, this is a key step to ensure we are in good form, and as a team we can keep improving our standards constantly.

“We have had a good training camp and are now looking forward to do well in the Asian Champions Trophy,” the Australian added.

Rupinder Pal Singh
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Asian Champions Trophy 2016: India beat Japan 10-2

India outplayed Japan 10-2 in their first match of the Asian Champions Trophy tournament played in Malaysia just a few minutes. It was a dominating display by the Indian team who decimated Japan right from the start.

In the first half, India got the first goal as Ramandeep Singh scored a brilliant field goal to give India 1-0 lead. The Men in Blue looked in control and gained possession. In the 9th minute, India earned the first penalty corner of the match and Rupinder Pal Singh scores from penalty corner to give India 2-0 lead. In the 12th minute, India earned the 2nd penalty corner and Rupinder Pal Singh scored the goal to give India 3-0 lead. India continued to dominate the Japanese team. In the last minute of the first quarter, Ramandeep scored from reverse stick to give India 4-0 lead. The Indian team led 4-0.

In the 2nd quarter too India earned another penalty corner in the 2nd minute which was converted by Rupinder Pal Singh to give India 5-0 lead.  In the 5th minute, Talwinder scores from reverse hit to give a 6-0 lead for India. In the 8th minute, India scored another goal by Rupinder Pal Singh to give India a 7-0 lead. In the next minute, Tanaka scored the first goal for India to reduce the gap to 1-7. At the end of second quarter, India led 7-1.

In the third quarter, Japan showed aggression and Ochai scored in the 8th minute to reduce the gap to 2-7. India played well but could not put pressure on the Japanese defence. The Japanese team looked sharp. At the end of 3rd quarter, India led 7-2.

In the fourth quarter, India dominated the proceedings. The Indian forward showed aggression. In the 1st minute, Rupinder scored two successive goals in first two minutes of the last quarter to give India a commanding 9-2 lead. In the 5th minute, Affan Yousuf scored to show their domination in the match. India won the match by 10-2 and started the tournament with a bang.

The Indian forwards looked in great shape and dominated Japan in all sections. They play their next match on 22nd October against South Korea

Rupinder Pal Singh

India hammer Japan 10-2 in Asian Champions Trophy hockey

Kuantan (Mayasia), Oct 20 (IANS) Rupinder Pal Singh scored six goals as India began their fourth men’s Asian Champions Trophy hockey tournament with a booming 10-2 win over Japan here on Thursday.

Ramandeep Singh opened the scoring floodgates in the second minute of the match. Rupinder then took over the mantle, netting in the ninth, 12th, 17th, 22nd, 46th, 47th minute.

Ramandeep scored his second goal in the 15th minute, in between the Rupinder blitz. Talwinder Singh (19) and Yousuf Affan (50) completed the scoreline.

Kenta Tanaka (23) and Hiromasa Ochiai (38) reduced the margin for Japan.

Rupinder also captained his country in the match.

India led 3-0 after the first quarter. And never looked back from then on, inflicting misery on the hapless Japanese players. They extended the lead to 7-1 at half-time.

India played without forward S.V. Sunil and midfielder Manpreet Singh, who have been ruled out of the tournament due to injury.

In another match, hosts Malaysia stunned defending champions Pakistan 4-2 in the opening match of the tournament earlier on Thursday.

P.R. Sreejesh

Sreejesh retained as captain for Asian hockey Champions Trophy

New Delhi, Oct 6 (IANS) Star goalkeeper P.R. Sreejesh was on Thursday retained as captain of the Indian men’s hockey team for the fourth edition of the Asian Champions Trophy, to be held at Kuantan in Malaysia from October 20.

Mid-fielder Manpreet Singh was named Sreejesh’s deputy in the 18-member squad announced by Hockey India (HI).

The squad is a mix of young and experienced players. Star drag flicker V.R. Raghunath has been rested along with the forwardline duo of Akashdeep Singh and Ramandeep Singh while seasoned defender Birendra Lakra makes a come-back after an injury lay-off.

Lakra, who recently showed his prowess in the recently held Obaidullah Khan Heritage Hockey Cup in Bhopal and the MCC-Murugappa Cup in Chennai, will form India’s defence along with the experienced Rupinder Pal Singh, Kothajit Singh, Surender Kumar and Pardeep Mor.

While the midfield line-up remains unchanged, the forwardline will see Talwinder Singh and Lalit Kumar Upadhyay. Defender Jasjit Singh Kular will be expected to double-up as drag flicker in the absence of Raghunath.

Scheduled two months after the Olympic Games, the men’s Asian Champions Trophy will see India, Korea, Japan, China and hosts Malaysia challenge defending champions Pakistan.

“The Asian Champions Trophy is an important tournament for us and going by the world rankings, India will go in as favourites to win the title. The team has been upbeat since their return to the camp after the Olympic Games and are eager to start the season on a winning note,” expressed Roelant Oltmans, chief coach and Director High Performance.

Commenting on his side’s preparations, Sreejesh emphasised on playing with caution.

“We may be the top ranked team in Asia right now but no team can be taken lightly. The defending Champions (Pakistan) are known to spring a surprise and Korea too will be a team to watch out for as they have been playing good quality hockey lately,” he said.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: P.R Sreejesh (Captain) Akash Chikte

Defenders: Rupinder Pal Singh, Pardeep Mor, Jasjit Singh Kular, Birendra Lakra, Kothajit Singh, Surender Kumar

Midfielders: Chinglensana Singh Kangujam, Manpreet Singh (Vice Captain), Sardar Singh, S.K. Uthappa, Devindar Walmiki

Forwards: Talwinder Singh, S.V. Sunil, Lalit Kumar Upadhyay, Nikkin Thimmaiah, Affan Yousuf

Vandana Katariya

Vandana named women’s hockey team captain for Asian CT

New Delhi, Oct 4 (IANS) Forward Vandana Katariya was named captain of the 18-member Indian women’s hockey squad announced on Tuesday for the fourth edition of the Asian Champions Trophy to be played in Singapore between October 29 and November 5.

The Uttarakhand player’s deputy will be gritty defender Sunita Lakra for the tournament that will feature the Asian continent’s five best teams — defending champions Japan, India, China, Korea and Malaysia.

This is the first tournament the Indian team will play after the 12th and last-place finish at the Rio Olympics in August.

Vandana feels the tournament will help the team access where they stand. “I feel honoured to lead the team as they are a great bunch and we understand each other’s weak and strong points.

“Rio was a great experience and there is a lot of scope for us to improve and I feel this tournament will help us understand where we stand and how we can improve our game as a team as well as individually,” Vandana said.

Apart from Sunita, other key defenders are Deep Grace Ekka, Renuka Yadav and Namita Toppo.

The midfield will be marshalled by experienced Rani Rampal, who will also have the support of Navjot Kaur, Monika and Deepika.

The field goal-scoring duties will be on Vandana, Poonam Rani and T. Anuradha Devi.

Savita and Rajani Etimarpu have been named goalkeepers.

The Asian Champions Trophy will follow a round robin format with each team playing each other once followed by the gold and bronze medal matches at the Sengkang Hockey Stadium.

“Though the Olympics could have ended better for the girls, they are high on confidence as they got to see what it really takes to play at the highest level and are vying to showcase top quality hockey during the Asian Champions Trophy,” chief coach Neil Hawgood said.

“The team has been training at SAI centre Bhopal over the past three weeks and are looking fresh from a well deserved break post Rio.”

The squad:

Goalkeepers: Savita, Rajani Etimarpu

Defenders: Deep Grace Ekka, Renuka Yadav, Sunita Lakra (vice-captain), Hnialum Lal Ruat Feli, Namita Toppo

Midfielders: Nikki Pradhan, Navjot Kaur, Monika, Rani Rampal, Deepika, Navdeep Kaur

Forwards: Poonam Rani, Anuradha Devi Thokchom, Vandana Katariya (Captain), Preeti Dubey, Punam Barla