Thank you for tuning into Sportstar’s live coverage of the men’s hockey Group B match between India and Ghana. This was Nihit Sachdevataking you through the action as it unfolded at the University of Birmingham Hockey and Squash centre.
Next match: Manpreet Singh-led Indian team will next face host nation England on August 1 at 8:30PM IST.
Summary: India did most things right in the Commonwealth Games opener. Lots of circle penetrations, plenty of penalty corners and different goalscorers. However, one thing which will be a concern is the fact that the men in blue conceded seven penalty corners which is not ideal preparation for its next match.
60’ FULL-TIME. India beats Ghana 11-0 with Harmanpreet scoring a hat-trick in his 150th international match.
59’ Brilliant work from Offei as he blocks a close shot from Varun.
58’ Abhishek’s shot misses the far post from the left half inside the D.
56’ Ten-man India earns another Penalty Corner. First rusher from Ghana slows down the drag-flick from Jarmanpreet and Offei clears the ball away.
54’ Yellow card for Jugraj for lifting his stick dangerously and a penalty corner for Ghana. Krishan Pathak saves the shot comfortably.
53’GOALLLLLL!!!!! Harmanpreet gets his hat-trick. India earned 11th penalty corner and the star drag-flicker converted the chance from second battery position.
52’ Akashdeep has time and space on his side, enters the Ghana D from the left, goes till the baseline before looking for an Indian player with a back pass. Ghana defense clears the danger.
51’ Against the run of play, Ghana earns a penalty corner. However, the attempted one-two move doesn’t work as they lose control of the ball and India switches to counter-attack in a flash.
50’ A couple of ferocious attacks from India. Could have been up by 11 or 12 only if it wasn’t for poor finishing.
48’ GOALLLLLL!!!!!! Mandeep with the final shot after a ninety degree pass from Gurjant who made an incredible run into the Ghana D.
46’ Final 15 minutes in this one-sided match.
45’ Final minute in this third quarter goes goalless. India leads 9-0.
43’GOAL!!!!!!! Jugraj Singh scores his second goal, this time from a penalty corner earned by India.
41’ Earlier in the day, Australia had beaten Scotland 12-0 in a Group A match. Will India win by a bigger margin?
39’ GOALLLL!!!! Varun Kumar converts the penalty corner to get his first goal. India has wreaked havoc in this quarter.
38’ GOALLLL!!!! Nilakanta Sharma joins the party as he puts the rebound in the back of the net after Offei saves a shot from Jarmanpreet.
35’ GOALLLLLLL!!!! Harmanpreet gets his second goal from PC. Went for the left top corner and gave absolutely no chance to Ghana.
35’ Penalty Corner for India. Harmanpreet went for the shot from some distance, Offei saved before Mandeep looked set to go for the rebound. However, Offei put the ball behind the baseline deliberately gifting a PC to the men in blue.
33’ Lalit finds an opposition foot inside the Ghana to earn another penalty corner for India. However, Amit Rohidas’ shot has been saved by Offei.
33’ Good save from Offei. It was a brilliant counter-attack from India. Lalit to Varun, back to Lalit, Lalit to Akashdeep inside the D, Akashdeep went for the goal but the Ghana goalie did what he was supposed to do.
31’ Third quarter begins and Ghana is off the blocks quickly. Penalty Corner given to Ghana for obstruction from Surender Kumar on Richard Adjei. Indian players use referral and the decision has been overturned.
First-half summary: Ghana has shown glimpses of decent hockey but overall, India has easily dominated. Abhishek and Lalit have been clinical (India has made 25 circle penetrations as compared to Ghana’s four). And to top it all, India has had five different goal-scorers.
30’ Varun Kumar had all the time in the world to go for the kill himself but instead, he went for a pass at the far post which eventually resulted in nothing. HALF-TIME.
28’ Abhishek and Lalit constantly troubling the Ghana defense with their combination play.
26’ Jugraj Singh with a shot at the Ghana goal but Offei saves it.
24’ Penalty Corner for Ghana. Careless defending from Hardik and Harmanpreet is not impressed. Two more penalty corners for Ghana but nothing to show for it on the scoreboard. India maintains the clean sheet for now.
23’ Amit Rohidas with a sensational solo move inside the Ghana D. Misses the bottom right corner narrowly.
22’ GOALLLLL!!!!! Jugraj Singh takes the penalty stroke and slots it into the left corner as the goalkeeper goes the other way.
22’ Penalty Corner for India again. Vivek Sagar manufactures it. Jugraj goes with the drag flick and it is an illegal obstruction from the last defender which means a penalty stroke for India.
20’ GOALLL!!!! A beautiful tomahwak shot from Akashdeep to finish a lovely move. Abhishek entered the D from the right, kept his composure before finding Akashdeep in the centre.
19’ Penalty Corner for India. Fourth of the match already. However, the rusher does well to block Harmanpreet’s shot.
18’ Manpreet receives a pass inside the D from Jarmanpreet from the right but the directed shot goes wide, missing the bottom right corner.
16’ Second quarter has begin. Despite conceding three goals, Ghana has played some positive hockey instead of simply staying deep inside its own half.
15’ End of a successful first quarter for India.
14’ GOALLLLLL!!!! India leads 3-0 and it is Shamsher who provides the finishing touch. Brilliant rotation and combination play between Abhishek and Lalit Upadhyay. A field goal. Brilliant.
12’ Green card for Ghana forward Benjamin Kwofie. Things not getting any better for the African team.
11’ GOALLLLL!!!! Harmanpreet extends India’s lead as he finds the top right corner with his drag flick.
10’ Penalty Corner for India. Harmanpreet goes for the kill with a lovely drag flick but it is saved. However, the official calls it “dangerous play” from Ghana and India gets another PC.
8’ A precise pass from the right flank finds Mandeep inside the D but before the forward could do anything, Ghana’s goalie Offei was up to the task.
5’ Jarmanpreet tries to link up with Mandeep from the right flank but Mandeep is unable to receive the ball clearly inside the D.
3’ Ghana manages to find an Indian foot inside the opposition D. Harmanpreet is the culprit. However, the African nation tries to be way too innovative with its Penalty Corner and Indian defense clears the danger.
2’ GOALLLLLLL!!!!! Abhishek converts the rebound and India leads.
1’ Penalty corner straight away for the men in blue as the Ghana defender was not five yards away from the indian player inside his own D when the Indian player was receiving a long pass.
8:28PM: The two teams are out on the field. Live action shortly!
8:15PM: Just 15 minutes to go before Indian men’s hockey team plays its first match at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
Forwards: Abhishek, Lalit Upadhyay, Shamsher, Gurjant, Mandeep
Midfielders: Manpreet, Hardik, Akashdeep, Nilakanta, Vivek Sagar
Defenders: Surender, Harmanpreet, Varun, Amit Rohidas, Jarmanpreet, Jugraj
Goalkeepers: PR Sreejesh, Krishan Pathak
Forwards: Emmanuel Ankomah, Richard Adjei, Benjamin Kwofie, Michael Baiden, Francis Tettey
Midfielders: Elikem Akaba, Emmanuel Akaba, Samuel Agbeli, Samuel Afari, Matthew Damalie, Christopher Dogbe
Defenders: Mohammed Osumanu, Charles Abbiw, Derick Lee, Ernest Opoku, Alfred Ntiamoah
Goalkeepers: Duisberg Offei, Eugene Acheampong
7:45PM: The Indian women’s hockey team has started its campaign in style, winning two out of two. Will the men’s side be able to do the same?
In search of an elusive Commonwealth Games gold, the Indian men's hockey team will look to start its campaign on a rousing note against lowly Ghana in its opening Pool B match.
The phenomenal success at the Tokyo Olympics, where India clinched a historic bronze after 41 years, has ignited hopes from the Manpreet Singh-led side to stop the Australian juggernaut.
Australia's dominance at the CWG is a matter of envy as the world No.1 Kookaburras have been the most dominant force in the Games' history, having won all the six gold medals till date.
Having missed out on a podium finish in the last edition of the Games in Gold Coast, India would be hungry for success here. Going by their form, the Indians can claim the elusive gold.
India's best results came in 2010 at home (New Delhi) and in Glasgow (2014) where they had finished runners-up. The team finished fourth twice -- in 1998 in Kuala Lumpur, where the sport made its debut, and in 2018 in Gold Coast.
The Indian team has improved by leaps and bounds under Australian Graham Reid.
Indian men’s hockey squad
Chief coach: Graham Reid
The competition in hockey at the CWG is pretty tough and, besides Australia, the Indians will have to get the better of teams like New Zealand, England, arch-rivals Pakistan and Canada to achieve their goal.
Talking about Sunday'a game, this will be the first time India will play against Ghana since the 1975 men's World Cup.
The last time the two teams played each other, India had won 7-0. Reid said adapting to the conditions had been a little tough for the side.
"It's surprisingly cold here. Each day, we get surprised and keep questioning whether the summer is coming anytime soon. Everyone is now settled in. The first few days, we were getting everyone accustomed to everything in the Village so that when the matches start, people are very familiar and comfortable," he said.
"We focused on getting accustomed to the pitch, the playing conditions, and getting ourselves adapted to the surroundings." India captain Manpreet said not underestimating any opponent is key to achieving their goal in the Games.
"Our philosophy this time around at the Commonwealth Games 2022 is to 'zoom out and zoom in'. Our coaches have told us to zoom out and visualise what we have to achieve. We want to win a medal, but how can we achieve the same? "The first thing that we have to do is not underestimate any team," said Manpreet, who will be playing his 300th international match on Sunday.
"Secondly, we have to ensure that we perform our best match by match and focus on our game plan." After Ghana, India will take on hosts England on Monday, followed by matches against Canada (August 3) and Wales (August 4).
When and where to watch India vs Ghana, Commonwealth Games 2022 men’s hockey match?
The India vs Ghana, Commonwealth Games 2022 men’s hockey match will be telecast live on Sony Sports Network. Live streaming will be available on Sony LIV from 8:30PM IST.
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