India make winning start in field hockey

Sandeep Singh converted two penalty corners as India blanked Hong Kong 7-0 to make an impressive start in the Asian Games men’s field hockey on Monday.

By (AFP)

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Published: Mon 15 Nov 2010, 5:33 PM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 5:21 AM

Singh scored both goals in the first half after Bharat Kumar had put India ahead in the second minute of the group B encounter at the Aoti hockey centre.

A goal from Sarvanjit Singh gave the Indians a 4-0 lead by half-time, which was built on after resumption through goals from Tushar Khandekar, Arjun Halappa and Shivendra Singh.

India, silver-medallists behind world champions Australia at last month’s Commonwealth Games in New Delhi, are hoping to win the 10-nation tournament and earn a direct entry to the 2012 London Olympics.

The eight-time Olympic champions missed the Beijing Games two years ago after failing to win a medal at the 2006 Doha Asiad.

India’s Spanish coach Jose Brasa said the easy win helped his team get acclimatised to the tough playing conditions.

“It was not easy to play on this pitch as the ball bounced more than usual,” said Brasa. “It was also difficult to control the ball during penalty corners.

“We need to get used to all this before the tougher matches since we did not get to play any practice match after reaching Guangzhou.”

India next play Bangladesh on Wednesday, ahead of the high-voltage clash against Pakistan on Saturday and the last league match against Japan on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Malaysia beat Singapore 3-0 in group A with three first-half goals from Hafifihafiz Hanafi, Azlan Misron and Abd Rahim.

Japan take on Bangladesh and China meet Oman later on Monday.

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