Indian Men’s Hockey Team beat Spain 2-2 (3-1 SO) in FIH Men’s Hockey Pro League 2022-23
Captain Harmanpreet Singh (12', 32') scored a brace for India in regulation time
Bhubaneswar: Indian Men’s Hockey Team picked up a thrilling 2-2 (3-1 SO) win over Spain in the FIH Men’s Hockey Pro League 2022-2023 match at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar on Sunday. Captain Harmanpreet Singh (7′, 32′) scored a brace for India in the match. Spain Captain Marc Miralles (43′) and Pere Amat (55′) scored the two goals for Spain in the regulation time as they pushed the match to a Shoot-Out, where India sailed past their opponents with goalkeeper Krishan Pathak stealing the show.
The first chance of the regulation time came for India with Jugraj Singh passing the ball to Mandeep Singh who tried to enter the circle but was covered by the Spanish defence. An attack from left flanks earned India a penalty corner opportunity, but Jugraj Singh’s shot just went wide. Minutes later, Shamsher Singh created another penalty corner for India and this time, Harmanpreet Singh struck it into the back of the nets to give India a 1-0 lead.
Trailing by a goal, Spain showcased urgency to get the equaliser as Jordi Bonastre earned his team an early penalty corner opportunity, only for Manpreet Singh to defend the shot. Spain tried to press deep inside India’s half, but Raj Kumar Pal did well to keep possession. Spain Captain Marc Miralles created a golden chance from the left flanks, and found Alvaro Iglesias in front of the nets. But goalkeeper Krishan Pathak made a brilliant save to deny Spain and India went into halftime with their 1-0 lead intact.
India threatened Spain’s defence as soon as the second half began with Mandeep Singh pushing deep inside Spain’s half, and earning an early penalty corner. Harmanpreet Singh converted yet another set piece to send the Bhubaneswar crowd into raptures as India doubled their lead. Krishan Pathak made two sensational saves to deny the opposition a chance to score from consecutive penalty corners. Marc Miralles finally managed to break the shackles as he opened the scoring for his team late in the third quarter.
With only 15 minutes left in the match, Spain pushed deep inside India’s circle to get the equaliser, and earned themselves another early penalty corner. But Marc Miralles was unable to trap the ball, and Spain missed the opportunity to put pressure on the hosts. Abhishek created a dangerous opportunity as he dribbled past Spanish defenders to enter the circle, but the ball just went wide off the target. Pere Amat scored a late goal as Spain levelled the scoring to push the match to a Shoot-Out.
Harmanpreet Singh converted the first attempt for India, while Krishan Pathak made the save in Spain’s first attempt from Joaquin Menini. Raj Kumar Pal doubled India’s lead with the second attempt, while Rafael Vilallonga missed for Spain with the second attempt as well. Shamsher Singh missed for India, while Gerard Clapes got one back for Spain. Abhishek scored to make it 3-1 for India, and Marc Miralles missed his shot as India won the match for the bonus point.
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