Madras Blues lifts Champions Cup

Principal Correspondent

HOCKEY / Final fails to raise to expectations

CHENNAI: Madras Blues (Chennai) edged out Thanthai Gnanamuthu HC (TGHC, Pandavarmangalam) 2-1 to win the SDAT-TNHA league State-level hockey tournament for the Champions Cup at SDAT-Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium here on Sunday.

It was a final not worthy of the occasion.

Neither team could exhibit skills that it was capable of. Action and intensity picked up only in the second half — Madras Blues had scored the first goal early in the first half through a fine straight drive from M. Rajkumar.

TGHC, too, started to display its tenacity.

The forwards exerted to a large extent and their sallies did give a trouble or two to the Blues team, comprising entirely of Loyola College students.

The work from the flanks which is so important in conceiving goals was, however, sadly missing for both the teams.

Vijayakumar scores

Vijayakumar, one of the key men in the forwardline for Blues, enhanced the lead with a clean strike.

Couple of minutes later, TGHC struck through Ruban whose sweep was very nicely placed.

Nagarajan, Commissioner & Chief Secretary, Planning and Development Department, Tamil Nadu, gave away the prizes.

Other results (semifinals):

Madras Blues 3 (Radhakrishnan, Vijayakumar, S. Nandakumar) bt Eleven Thunders (Vellore) 2 (Purushothaman, Michael).

TGHC (Pandavarmangalam) 4 (Anbu Kannan 2, Shankar, Sathish Kumar, Ruban) bt Sivakumar MHC (Tanjore) 4 (Saravanan, Hari Krishnan, Kalidoss, Nirmal) via sudden death (0-0 at full-time and 4-4 in tiebreaker).

Special prizes: Durand Anthony (Madras Blues); Muruganandam (TGHC, Pandavarmangalam); Manikandan (Sivakumar Memorial HC); Pal Sesu (Tirunelveli Sports Hostel).

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