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Harmanpreet helps India thrash Spain

Harmanpreet Singh

Harmanpreet Singh   | Photo Credit: K. MURALI KUMAR

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In the women’s Test, Gurjit’s strike stuns Great Britain

Dragflicker Harmanpreet Singh scored a brace as the Indian men’s hockey team routed European runner-up Spain 6-1 in their Test match on Saturday.

Skipper Manpreet Singh opened the scoring in the 24th minute before strikes from Nilakanta Sharma, Mandeep Singh and Rupinderpal Singh sealed India’s biggest win against Spain.

After the first half drew a blank, India went on the offensive in the second. After Manpreet’s goal, Harmanpreet doubled the lead in the 28th minute off a penalty corner. However, Pau Quemada reduced Spain’s deficit to 1-2 in the very next minute.

Three minutes later, Harmanpreet sounded the boards with a drag flick. Nilakanta made it 4-1 in the 39th from open play while Mandeep added another in the 56th. In the 60th, Rupinderpal’s drag flick completed the rout.

At Marlow (United Kingdom), Gurjit Kaur’s last-minute effort saw the Indian women beat Great Britain 2-1 in a thrilling opening encounter of the five-match series.

It was a brilliant come-from-behind victory for India after trailing 0-1. Sharmila Devi got India’s other goal.

After a barren first half, India took control of the game and won a couple of penalty corners in the first few minutes forcing smart saves from custodian Maddie Hinch. At the other end, Britain was also thwarted by goalkeeper Savita Punia.

Britain broke through first in the final quarter, with Emily Defrond scoring in the 46th minute. India mounted pressure and soon reaped the dividends with Sharmila restoring parity.

The match looked like ending in a draw but with 48 seconds left, India won a short corner and Gurjit successfully converted it.

The results:

Men: At Antwerp: India 6 (Harmanpreet 2, Manpreet, Nilakanta, Mandeep, Rupinderpal) bt Spain 1 (Quemada).

Women: At Marlow: India 2 (Gurjit, Sharmila) bt Great Britain 1 (Defrond).

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Printable version | Dec 14, 2019 6:23:13 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/harmanpreet-helps-india-thrash-spain/article29543912.ece

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