TN to meet Central Secretariat in final
(Eds: Updating with result of second semifinal)
Chennai, Jan 19 (PTI) Host Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu edged out Sports Authority of India (SAI) 6-5 via the tie-breaker to enter the final of the Hockey India Senior National men's hockey championship ('B' Division) here Saturday.
Tamil Nadu will take on Central Secretariat beat Bengaluru Hockey Association 7-6 via a penalty shootout after the match ended in a thrilling 3-3 draw.
Earlier, in an exciting semifinal encounter in which the lead kept changing hands, Tamil Nadu and SAI were locked 3-all at the end of regulation time.
In the penalty shootout, Tamil Nadu converted three of the five attempts, while SAI managed to score only two, enabling the home team seal a place in the final.
By reaching the final, Tamil Nadu also qualified for the 'A' Division after a gap of four years.
SAI started well and went ahead in the ninth minute through Bobby Singh Dhami, before Tamil Nadu levelled seven minutes later as Shanmugham found the mark.
The host took a 2-1 lead in the 20th minute when Vinodhan converted a penalty corner.
However, SAI restored parity through Mohit Kumar in the 25th minute.
Tamil Nadu regained the lead in the 40th minute when Vinod Rayer got one past the rival custodian.
A penalty corner conversion by Rahil Kumar in the very next minute helped SAI equalise.
In the penalty shootout, Senthil Nayagam, R Manikandan and S Manikandan converted for Tamil Nadu while Joshua and skipper Senthil missed out.
SAI players missed the first, second and the fifth shot and managed to convert the third and fourth through Vishal and Lokesh Bora respectively.
In the second semifinal, Pardeep Mor, Dharambir Yadav, Govind Singh Rawat and Imran Khan scored in the tie-breaker to help Central Secretariat win.
Govind Singh Rawat (15th minute, 52nd) had scored twice in regulation time and Dharambir Yadav (14th) scored a goal for the winning team.
For Bengaluru Hockey Association, Veeranna Gouda's double strike in the 10th and 11th minutes had given his team a flying start while C Abhilash Stalin scored in the 50th minute