India bounce back with a 5-1 victory in Johor Cup
The Indian junior men’s hockey team returned to winning ways, beating Japan 5-1 at the Sultan of Johor Cup as Captain Uttam Singh scored the first goal for them
At the Sultan of Johor Cup in this city today, the Indian junior men’s hockey team got its winning streak back on track by defeating Japan 5-1. India’s captain Uttam Singh opened the scoring in the third minute, followed by goals from Rohit (12), Johnson Purty (21), Boby Singh Dhami (31), and Amandeep Lakra (51), while Japan’s solitary goal came from Ikumi Saeki (15).
India started the game slowly but soon got going. Uttam defeated the Japanese goalkeeper after dominating for a while. Additionally, despite Japan’s danger from a few penalty corners, India’s defence did not give them much room.
India withstood Japan’s assault before Rohit converted a penalty corner to give his team a 2-0 lead. Saeki’s successful penalty corner conversion allowed Japan to score once more.
In the opening minutes of the second quarter, both teams exchanged punches before Purty’s accurate shot from the top of the circle gave India back a two-goal advantage.
India made a strong second-half start with Dhami’s addition of a fourth. Japan was awarded a sixth penalty corner, but the Indian defence was able to clear their lines due to a poor trap. In the last moments of the quarter, Japan did up their effort, but India stopped them, keeping the three-goal advantage.
In the fourth quarter, Japan launched an early offensive in an effort to score quickly, but India dug in and maintained good control.
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Following the initial barrage of attacks, India upped the ante, and Lakra successfully converted a penalty corner.
India’s fourth game tomorrow is against Australia. Australia has already won three straight games after defeating the reigning champions Great Britain 3-1. With nine points, they are in first place. With six points, India is in second place, ahead of South Africa on goal differential. Today’s match saw South Africa defeat Malaysia, 3-1.