Skipper Harmanpreet Singh and Mandeep Singh slammed a hat-trick each as India mauled Bangladesh 12-0 to storm into the semi-finals of the men’s hockey competition at the Asian Games here on Monday.
Harmanpreet (2nd, 4th, 32nd minutes) converted three penalty corners, while Mandeep (18th, 24th, 46th) also found the net thrice as India remained unbeaten in Pool A.
Lalit Kumar Upadhyay (23rd), Amit Rohidas (28th), Abhishek (41st, 57th), Nilakanta Sharma (47th) and Gurjant Singh (56th) were the other scorers for India.
India will play the second-best team of Pool B in the semi-final on Wednesday.
It was complete dominance by India from start to finish as they scored goals from both penalty corners and field play.
The Indians pumped in seven field goals and converted five out of 11 penalty corners earned in the match.
India mounted continuous raids throughout the match to pump in six goals in each half.
It took India two minutes to take the lead when Harmanpreet converted the first penalty corner of the match.
The skipper found the target two minutes later by converting another penalty corner.
Young Abhishek and Mandeep were the live-wires upfront as they combined well to help India score.
Abhishek turned out to be the provider in the next two goals through Mandeep and Lalit, who were at the right place at the right time to direct the ball into the net in the second quarter.
India soon secured their third penalty corner and Mandeep scored from a rebound after Harmanpreet’s flick was saved by Bangladesh goalkeeper Mohammed Noyon. Rohidas then found the net again from a penalty corner as India went into the breather with a 6-0 lead.
After the change of ends, India earned penalty corners in abundance and Harmanpreet registered his hat-trick from one such opportunity.
Abhishek then registered his name on the score-sheet by slamming a terrific goal with a reverse hit from top of the circle. Mandeep and Abishek once again combined to give India its ninth goal.
A minute later Nilakanta scored from a rebound after Abhishek’s shot was saved by Noyon. Gurjant and Abhishek then scored two more goals in the final five minutes of the match to complete the rout.
Shuttlers stay on medal course
India’s Kidambi Srikanth progressed to the men’s singles second round with a comfortable straight-game win over Vietnam’s Phat Le Duc in the badminton competition of the Asian Games here on Monday.
Srikanth, a 2021 World Championships silver medallist, outclassed Le Duc 21-10, 21-10 in 29 minutes to set up a clash with Korea’s Lee Yun Gyu.
Commonwealth Games gold medallists Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty also sailed into the men’s doubles pre-quarter finals with a 21-11, 21-16 win over Hong Kong’s Chow Hin Long and Lui Chun Wai.
The Indian duo, ranked world No. 3, will next face Indonesia’s Leo Rolly Carnando and Daniel Marthin.
In mixed doubles, K Sai Pratheek and Tanisha Crasto prevailed 21-18, 21-14 over Macau’s Leong Iok Chong and Weng Chi NG to make a winning start.
They will square off against Malaysia’s Chen Tang Jie and Toh Ee Wei in the round of 16.
However, the Indian camp was grappling with injuries and health issues with MR Arjun pulling out due to a back injury and Rohan Kapoor suffering from a bout of fever.
While the men’s doubles pair of Arjun and Dhruv Kapila retired after lagging 3-13 in the opening game to Japan’s Takuro Hoki and Yugo Kobayashi, the mixed doubles pair of Sikki Reddy and Rohan, too, was forced to retire two minutes into their opening match against Malaysia’sGoh Soon Huat and Shevon Lai Jemie.