A fairly dull encounter which saw very few glimpses of attacking gameplay ends with the Black Sticks edging past an off-colour Indian team with a 1-0 scoreline. The Indians are left to rue their half-chances which could’ve otherwise produced a much-needed breakthrough against the New Zealand side who are placed three positions lower than their 5th by the FIH as per the latest rankings.
Next in the championship, India will play Argentina on Saturday, 2nd of July at 05:30pm IST.
59’ – It proves to be yet another wasteful chance for India who are now seconds away from their second defeat of this championship.
58’ – Two minutes left on the clock and India earn a penalty corner. Could this be the moment?
55’ – With five minutes to go, the way New Zealand are getting plenty of numbers to check India’s progress as soon as they take control is making it very difficult for the Men in Blue to seize an equaliser.
52’ – A sudden counter by Talwinder had split the Black Sticks’ defence but Ramandeep failed to direct his shot into the goal, thus keeping New Zealand’s lead intact.
50’ – Both sides seeing an equal share of the ball with ten minutes remaining on the clock.
End of Q3. India still trail by one goal. Can they cause a turnaround in the final 15 minutes?
45’ – A spell of possession that started with Raghunath’s long corner fizzed out after the ball took several Indian touches before going out of play as the third quarter came to a close.
40’ – Akashdeep from the left and Ramandeep from the right side have been trying to fetch something positive for the Blueshirts, but without any success.
36’ – Another interception from Rupinder restores the possession for India but time is fast running out for them to stage a comeback now.
32’ – V Raghunath makes himself big at the centre of India’s defence to restrict an attempted forward surge by New Zealand from finding shape.
Play resumes for the second half.
It will be interesting to see what changes the Indian outfit can come up with to get back into this game in the second half.
Below is India’s standing coming into this match among the six participating nations:
END OF FIRST HALF. New Zealand 1-0 India.
30’ – Two long corners in quick succession but the Men in Blue can’t get into the scoresheets. Hooter is blown to signal half-time.
27’ – A penalty corner for India, finally, but yields nothing as the New Zealand keeper watches the ball go wide of his left post.
26’ – Rupinder gets a vital touch inside the D to prevent the Black Sticks from doubling their lead.
25’ – Indian coach Roelant Oltmans is making use of his rolling subs now in a bid to find an equaliser.
18’ – GOAL! Stephen Jenness makes a meal out of the keeper’s poor clearance to give New Zealand the lead early into the 2nd quarter.
Congratulations to Akashdeep Singh on his 100th appearance for the national side!
15’ – We’re at the end of the first quarter and it’s tied 0-0 between India and New Zealand at the Campo de Hockey de Valencia.
13’ – After another diving attempt inside the circle by the Indian strikeforce, it’s still goalless. SV Sunil has been a busy man so far.
8’ – The first penalty corner goes to New Zealand which leads to a fine save under the woodwork.
7’ – Talwinder is one-on-one with the opponents’ keeper but can’t find the net.
4’ – Unlike their previous two games, the Indians are dominating possession at the centre.
It’s the Black Sticks who get us underway.
We’re now exactly ten minutes away from pushback.
Hello! Good Evening!
India take on on New Zealand on Day 3 of the Six Nations Invitational Tournament in Valencia, Spain.
The journey so far for the Indian team coming off the highs of the 2016 Champions Trophy in London has been bittersweet of sorts. In their first two fixtures, they went up against an aggressive German outfit and a testing Irish side before getting a day off before action resumed on Thursday. Incidentally, both Germany and Ireland feature in the same group as India in the upcoming Olympics, thus providing them with the opportunity to face off at a preparatory meet in advance.
Unfavourably for the Men in Blue, the Germans were emphatic on the opening day en route to their 4-0 thrashing which happened in the course of the same month that had earlier seen India let slip a lead of two goals in the second half to effect a 3-3 tie in their Champions Trophy encounter.
Head coach Roelant Oltmans was understandably disappointed by the Indian show on Monday which led to him bringing about some reshuffling before the next match against Ireland. Yet again, India was off to a poor start as Kyle Good gave the Irish the lead as early as the 4th minute to set up another chase for the former.
The second quarter held better fortunes in store for the Blueshirts who found their first breakthrough at Valencia via the stick of Punjab forward Talwinder Singh. Later, it was none other than charismatic skipper Sardar Singh who scored India’s second to facilitate a closely contested victory over the underdogs from Ireland.
That brings us to today’s clash against the Black Sticks from New Zealand. Head-to-head records do not provide much to separate the two teams since each had tasted one success apiece in their previous two meetings, the latest going the Oceanian team’s way in April at the Sultan Shah Cup in Malaysia. It is worth noting here that on Tuesday, the same New Zealand team was crushed 6-1 by at the current venue and they will be eager to make amends when they face World No. 5 India, today.
Today’s India vs New Zealand, Men’s Hockey Match Time:
Play will begin at 9:30 p.m. IST.
PR Sreejesh (VC) Vikas Dahiya, Rupinder Pal Singh, VR Raghunath, Kothajit Singh, Surender Kumar, Harmanpreet Singh, Birendra Lakra, Danish Mujtaba, Chinglensana Singh Manpreet Singh, Sardar Singh (C), SK Uthappa, Devinder Walmiki, Harjeet Singh, Talwinder Singh, SV Sunil, Akashdeep Singh, Ramandeep Singh, Nikkin Thimmaiah.Published 30 Jun 2016, 20:18 IST