Indian hockey team maintain 100 per cent winning record on Belgium tour
By defeating the hosts by 5-1 in the fifth and last match India men’s hockey team on Thursday maintained their 100 per cent winning record in their tour of Belgium. The Indian team won all five matches by beating Belgium 2-0 in the opening match, and registering 6-1 and 5-1 wins over Spain in the next two games, before finishing off their tour with two wins against Belgium (2-1 and 5-1). In the last match, Simranjeet Singh (7′), Lalit Kumar Upadhyay (35′), Vivek Sagar Prasad (36′), Harmanpreet Singh (42′) and Ramandeep Singh (43′), all registered goals to secure a comprehensive win for India. Coming into the match with four wins in their kitty, India was brimming with confidence. The side started the game on the front foot and produced a stunning move in the 7th minute to take the lead through forwarding Simranjeet Singh. Belgium did try to force a comeback but their penalty corner was saved by Krishan B Pathak in the 9th minute. The second quarter saw world number two Belgium win themselves back-to-back penalty corners in the 16th minute, but India’s Pathak made sure that their lead stayed intact. The visitors started the third quarter with attacking intent and were rewarded immediately, with Upadhyay bagging his first goal of the match in the 35th minute extending the lead to 2-0. Another attack in the next minute saw youngster Prasad also registering his name on the score-sheet as he produced a crafty finish to beat the Belgium goalkeeper. In the 38th minute, Belgium won a penalty corner, but Sreejesh’s diving saves kept the score down to 3-0 in India’s favour. However, a brilliant strike from the retake by Alexander Hendrickx made it 3-1 in the 39th minute. But Belgium could not stay in the match for too long as India replied to conceding by scoring twice in two minutes just before the end of the third quarter and extending their lead to 5-1. India’s fourth goal was scored by drag-flicker Harmanpreet, who converted a Penalty Corner in the 42nd minute, while the fifth goal came through Ramandeep, who scored in the 43rd minute to finish off a great team move. Playing at home, the world champions tried to make inroads into the Indian striking circle but some strong tackling and interceptions in the last quarter meant that the Indians maintained their 100 per cent record in the five matches, and secured a huge 5-1 win to finish off the tour. Get Breaking news and Latest News from India and around the world on GlobalPunjabTV.in. Like us on Facebook for news updates.