|February 21st, 2013|
|9||Round Robin||8:00pm||IRL - IND||2 - 3 (1 - 1)||Final||x 11|
Dharamvir Singh’s superb backhand shot handed India a prized win over main men’s Hero Hockey World League Round Two 2013 rivals Ireland to go clear at the top of the group after day three.
It shaded a titanic tussle which saw precious little daylight between the sides throughout. The hosts hit their stride earlier in the tie and, from their fourth penalty corner, Rupinder Pal Singh found the bottom corner.
Ireland steadied, though, and were back on terms in the 27th minute. It was an unorthodox move as the ball was slipped left to Conor Harte who turned on his left and slotted home for parity which lasted until the second half.
India started the second half in the ascendancy and retook the lead from VR Raghunath’s ripper of a drag-flick, picking out the glove side this time. The pendulum swung once more back Ireland’s way and a very nice transfer out to the left to Eugene Magee opened up the space for him to fire home from a narrow angle.
That came with 20 minutes remaining and plenty of chances for either side to win it. Ireland’s chances were mainly from the corners but India’s speed on the counter-attack was a sight to behold and the clincher came with 14 minutes left.
Mandeep Singh was cut loose down the left and he picked out Dharamvir Singh at the top of the circle from where he found a route through David Harte. There were more chances to make the game safe but the towering goalkeeper stood tall to keep out Danish Mujtaba and SV Sunil while PR Sreejesh denied Magee’s drive.
In a nerve-wracking denouement, Ireland won three penalty corners in the closing two minutes but none yielded a goal and so they now sit second in the table, level with China and Bangladesh while India are three points clear.