Doha: India on Monday entered the final of the Asian Champions Trophy after registering an emphatic win over arch-rivals Pakistan.
A confident India overcame the first half blues before defeating Pakistan 2-1 in the penultimate match of the tourney.
While Rupinder Pal Singh and Chenglansena scored goals for India, Pakistan’s lone goal came from the stick of Mohammed Waqas. It was India’s fourth straight win.
Earlier, it had beaten China (4-0), Japan (3-1) and Oman (11-0) in the league.
After a barren first half, the game came alive soon after the lemon time.
Youngster Danish Mujtafa sprinted past a host of rival defenders and entered the circle but was stick-checked by a Pakistani defender in front of the goal mouth, leading to Malaysian umpire Lingam Karuppusaky signal the only stroke of the match.
Rupinder Pal Singh converted it for the first goal of the intensely fought match (1-0). Chenglensana then made use of a gem pass from Gurwinder Chandi to enhance the lead through field effort in the 51st minute (2-0).
Pakistan replied through their third penalty corner. The Indian goalie stopped the shot, but Waqas collected the rebound which was shoulder high and tapped in (1-2). The Indians protested for high ball, but the umpires stood their ground.
Shortly after Pakistan reduced the margin, India suffered on account of yellow card to vice-captain VR Raghunath but managed to hold on to the lead till the end.
Pakistan did not give up, and even got a penalty corner at the hooter time. But Indian defence stood to the task. India were unable to convert any of the four corners they won in the match.