Sultan Azlan Shah Cup 2019: India beat hosts Malaysia in a thrilling encounter
India defeated Malaysia a thrilling encounter played in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup at Ipoh, Malaysia on Tuesday. It was an exciting encounter, with both teams playing attacking hockey, but India held their nerves to win the match.
In the 5th minute of the game, Malaysia earned a penalty corner but the Indian goalkeeper, Krishnan Pathak, made a great save. India made aggressive moves and put pressure on the Malaysian defense in the early stages, but could not score goals. The scores remained 0-0 at the end of first quarter.
The Indian team began the second quarter on a high note by playing aggressive hockey. In the 17th minute, Sumit Kumar scored a goal from a free hit outside the circle to give India 1-0 lead. India earned 5 successive penalty corners after that, but failed to convert any of them into goals.
Malaysia earned two successive penalty corners later in the second quarter. The first one was well saved by PR Sreejesh, but the second one was well converted by Razie Rahim in the 21st minute to level the scores at 1-1. In the 27th minute, Sumit Kumar Junior scored a brilliant field goal to give India 2-1 lead. At the end of the first half, India still led 2-1.
It was a great start for India in the 3rd quarter as they earned 3 successive penalty corners. In the 36th minute, Varun Kumar scored a superb penalty corner goal to give India 3-1 lead.
Both teams displayed fine skills of hockey after India scored the 3rd goal. Malaysia earned 3 successive penalty corners before the end of the 3rd quarter, but failed to convert any of them into goals. India led 3-1 after the 3rd quarter.
Malaysia played attacking hockey right from word go in the 4th quarter, but Indian defence was up to the task. In the 57th minute, Tengku Tajuddin scored a field goal to reduce the margin to 2-3. In the 58th minute, Mandeep Singh scored a field goal that helped India to win the match by 4-2.
With this win, India moved up to number 2nd in the points table. Their next match of the tournament is against Canada on 27th March 2019.