Imphal (Manipur), 10 January 2018: Action in the 8th Hockey India Senior Men National Championship 2018 (B Division) continued today into its fourth day with Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu, Manipur Hockey, Hockey Puducherry, Sports Authority of India, Central Secretariat and Bengaluru Hockey Association, all registering victories in their respective Pool matches.
In the opening match of the day, Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu defeated Sports Authority of Gujarat – Hockey Academy 3-2 in a nervy Pool D encounter which saw the former bag the winner in the closing stages of the match. The first goal of the match was scored by Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu’s S Silverstalin in the 5th minute. But Sports Authority of Gujarat – Hockey Academy struck back in the 10th minute as Ashab Kureshi scored to equalise, and then in the 25th minute, Ruchit Patel gave them a 2-1 lead. However, Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu did not give up and scored two goals to make a sensational comeback and snatch a 3-2 win, with M Hariharan (32′) and G Saravanakumar (58′) being the scorers.
In another Pool D match, Manipur Hockey triumphed over Hockey Gujarat to defeat them with a margin of 28-1. It was a goals’ galore for the Manipur Hockey team as they scored eight goals each in the first two quarters and backed them up with six goals each in the last two quarters. Interestingly, only three goals out of the 29 goals scored in the match came through a penalty corner, while all the 26 other goals were field goals. Manipur Hockey dominated the match from the 2nd minute and continued scoring until the last minute of the match. The only goal for Hockey Gujarat was scored by Rohit Thakor in the 55th minute. Goals for Manipur Hockey were scored by captain Wangamba Kshetrimayum (12′, 21′, 45′, 46′, 54′), Heramani Singh Lisham (32′, 33′, 34′, 35′, 60′), Ibungo Singh Konjengbam (4′, 8′, 42′), Kiren Kumar Thokchom (15′, 18′, 22′), Bhakar Ningombam (17′, 26′, 28′), Debeshor Konjengbam (22′, 29′, 49′), Papunao Haobam (7′, 8′), Suresh Singh Shurenshangbam (2′), Mantosh Meitei Laishram (3′), Dollar Kshetrimayum (58′) and Suras Singh Wahengbam (59′).
Hockey Puducherry produced a dominant performance to defeat Hockey Bihar 12-1 in a Pool E match. Hockey Puducherry’s R Ranjith scored a sensational seven goals in the match as he struck in the 16th, 23rd, 25th, 37th 45th, 47th and 58th minutes to seal the match for his team. S Surjith (7′, 10′), N Sellamuthu (28′), T Arunkumar (38′) and S Muthukrishnan (51′) scored for Hockey Puducherry while Shashi Kumar Rana (26′) scored the consolation goal for Hockey Bihar.
In a Pool A match, Sports Authority of India beat Assam Hockey with a scoreline of 9-0. B.N Sridhar (2′, 32′, 45′) scored a hat-trick for Sports Authority of India while Pravakar Minz (18′, 57′), Abhishek (22′), Deepak (36′), Vikram (40′) and P Surya Prakash (54′) also scored for them in a dominant display against Assam Hockey.
Another high-scoring encounter in Pool A saw Central Secretariat defeat Tripura Hockey 12-1. Central Secretariat were helped by the eight goals scored by their number 9, Thimmanna S Puliyanda (4′, 5′, 8′, 18′, 35′, 37′, 48′, 57′) which also included a hat-trick of penalty corners, while Shankar Sidharth (25′), captain Vinayak Bijwad (30′), Shashi Topno (58′) and Joshua Vessoakar (58′) also scored for the winning team. Tripura Hockey scored their only goal of the match in the 34th minute when Siraj Khan scored a field goal.
In the last match of the day, Bengaluru Hockey Association continued their good form in Pool E by winning their second consecutive match of the competition when they defeated Goans Hockey with a scoreline of 7-1. The match saw Bengaluru Hockey Association strike early in the 3rd minute through a penalty corner and then extended their lead to four goals after the 34th minute. However, Goans Hockey pulled one goal back in the 35th minute through Suraj Gaonkar to make it 4-1 in Bengaluru Hockey Association’s favour. However, the latter continued their onslaught and scored three more goals to secure a 7-1 victory. Goals for Bengaluru Hockey Association were scored by HT Ramesh (34′, 41′, 51′), Rama Shankar (3′, 28′), Manikanth Bejawad (32′) and N Honnur Swamy (38′).