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Indians begin with a defeat

New Delhi: India’s campaign in the Hockey World League (WHL) began on a wrong note when they went down to England 0-2 in a Pool A match, at the Dhyan Chand Stadium, here on Friday. Midfielder and Man of the Match Dixon Adam struck both the goals from penalty corners.

Given India’s performance on the opening night, not much could be expected from Terry Walsh’s boys in the tournament.

The Indians looked a rusty side, who ran out of imagination every time they reached the rival area. They also looked painfully short of their basics that gave England a rather easy run.

The Indian display looked even more disappointing especially after Germany’s sparkling show in the other Pool A match.

Combined with terrific speed and fine skills, the Olympic champions demolished New Zealand 6-1 after leading 3-1 at the breather. India would play their last group league match against Germany.

India were never in the match, the fourth-placed team in the European Championship and also faltered badly in converting the four penalty corners that came their way. Once Rupinder Singh did sound the board, but the goal was disallowed as Birendra Lakra failed to stop the ball properly.

In Pool B, Argentina caused an upset defeating three-time world champions the Netherlands 5-2, while Australia got off to a 3-2 win over Belgium.

TODAY’S MATCHES

Belgium vs Argentina; Netherlands vs Australia; England vs Germany; India vs New Zealand