FIH Series Finals, India vs Uzbekistan - As it happened: Host enters semis with 10-0 win

Akashdeep Singh scored a hat-trick as India trounced Uzbekistan 10-0 in its final Pool A match to reach the semifinals of the FIH Hockey Series Finals at the Kalinga Stadium, Bhubaneswar.

India's forward line has been guilty of wasting multiple chances despite winning the matches against Russia and Poland.   -  Biswaranjan Rout

Hello and Welcome to the LIVE Score updates, commentary of the FIH Series Finals match between India and Uzbekistan at the Kalinga Stadium, Bhubaneswar.

 

FULL-TIME: India 10-0 Uzbekistan

India has blown hot and cold throughout the match. While it was lack of creativity in the first quarter, it as lack of finishing and being unable to deflect crosses in Q3 and Q4. In the midst of all is the second quarter, where India played like world no 5, scoring four goals. With this win India progresses to the semifinal after topping Pool A while USA is the semifinalist from Pool B after holding Asian Games champion Japan to a 2-2 draw earlier in the day.

 

60' GOAL! Nilkanta Sharma does well to pick out Mandeep on the left. The forward clashes with goalkeeper, but manages to put the ball into the net. Uzbekistan players are not happy as they feel Mandeep has fouled Askarov, but the umpire waves off their demands.

58' Nilkanta Sharma foils an attack by Uzbekistan and Ramandeep goes off the pitch as the clock is winding down. He would be very disappointed to have not scored in this match.

55' Graham Reid's stern expression on the sidelines tells the story of the match. The Australian knows he needs to work more with his attackers.

53' PC for India! However, Harmanpreet's dragflick is not well direct as it sails safely over the goalpost.

53' HAT-TRICK FOR AKASHDEEP! Surender Kumar finds Akashdeep on the baseline, who turns quickly to scoop the ball into the net. He gets some help from an Uzbek stick as the umpire signals a goal.

48' India has settled for a round of passing. The host has reverted back to its lack of intensity from the first quarter.

46' Mandeep gets the ball on the right and tries to set up Mandeep at the far post. However, there is too much power behind the Indian skipper's hit and the ball is out of play.

-End of Q3-

45' GOAL FOR INDIA! 8-0 to the host. Amit Rohidas starts the attack from the middle as he sends the ball to Sumit on the left; the midfielder sets up Gursahibjit who sends it past the goalkeeper.

42' Ramandeep flashes the ball across the goal but there is no one to get on the end of it.

41' Satlikov Ruslan tries to find Umarov Muminjon, in what looked like the first real chance for the visitor but the pass was mishit.

39' Mandeep feeds Simranjeet with a pass, the latter sends it across the face of the goal. However, Ramandeep misses the chance to net it in.

38' An unusual error from Manpreet gifts the ball to Uzbekistan, however the midfielder recovered the ball immediately.

35' Simranjeet wins a PC. Harmanpreet steps up for it but attempt is blocked by the Uzbekistan runners.

34' Solid defending by Uzbekistan as Harmanpreet's attempt to attack from the right is blocked out by Okhunjon Mirzakarimov.

33' Vivek Prasad and Harmanpreet combine as the former takes the shot, but the attempt was deflected by the Uzbekistan goalkeeper.

32' Sumit tries to find Mandeep with his pass but his delivery was mistimed as Uzbekistan intercepts the pass.

31' Second half begins. India begins the proceedings.

HALF-TIME: India 7-0 Uzbekistan

As it was the case in the previous matches against Russia and Poland, India began the proceedings in a laid-back fashion. The forwards and the dragflickers failed to beat Uzbekistan's goalkeeper Marsel Askarov, but finally found their groove back as the second quarter went by. So far, Uzbekistan has not been able to mount any meaningful attack and was pinned back by the host.

30' INDIA SCORES THE SEVENTH! Mandeep scores the easiest of goals. Ramandeep makes space on the left and finds Mandeep alongside Akashdeep waiting to tap into an empty net. Mandeep gets the ball and nudges in.

28' Mandeep wins a PC! Marsel Askarov saves Varun Kumar's dragflick and Ramandeep tries to get on the rebound but the umpire awards a free-hit for Uzbekistan.

27' SIXTH! Too easy for India. Amit Rohidas places his dragflick in the centre and Nilkanta Sharma is waiting for the rebound and smashes the ball into the net.

26' AKASHDEEP SCORES! Second goal for the forward. This time the finish was right out of the top drawer. He makes space on the left and smashes it into the far right corner.

25' India has been scoring goals at a good rate, but their conversion has been poor. Ramandeep, Mandeep and Akashdeep have been tepid in the first half so far.

22' INDIA 4-0! Varun Kumar gets to the baseline quickly from the right and tries to find Mandeep at the near post, but his shot is deflected into the net by an Uzbek stick. India will take it nonetheless.

21' Hardik Singh goes close! The midfielder finds himself unmarked on the edge of the circle and goes for the goal. However, his reverse hit narrowly misses the goalpost.

20' Ramandeep Singh fluffs an easy chances after he gets on the end of a diagonal ball from the deep and just has the goalkeeper to beat. He waits too long to take his shot and the goalkeeper blocks the attempt easily.

18' Ilhomjon Sultonov is shown a green card for a rash tackle on Manpreet Singh in the middle of the pitch.

16' Uzbekistan tries to launch an attack through Shavkatbek Mirzakarimov, but he is the only one and Birendra Lakra wins back the ball from the forward.

-End of Q1-

15' ROHIDAS MAKES IT 3-0! Amit Rohidas targets the right top corner. The ball hits the inside of the crossbar and bounces into the net.

15' The umpire turns down Ramandeep's appeal for a PC as the forward.

12' Poor from the Indian forwards. Akashdeep puts in a cross from the left with Mandeep unmarked at the far post. However, he fails to deflect the ball from close range from the easiest of chances. This is something will worry Graham Reid.

11' GOAL INDIA! Varun Kumar's dragflick is straight at Askarov, but Akashdeep pounces on the rebound to finish into an empty net.

11' Ramandeep Singh wins a PC for India.

9' PC for India! But Harmanpreet skies his shot which bounces off the crossbar.

8' Surender Kumar's one-two with Mandeep is deemed dangerous by the umpire and Uzbekistan gets a free-hit.

6' Nilkanta Sharma puts Mandeep through in the circle, but the forward cannot shake off his marker and the visitor manages to clear.

4' GOAL INDIA! Varun Kumar waits for a split second for the goalkeeper to make the attempted save and then hits the target on the left bottom corner.

4' Mandeep wins India another PC. Harmanpreet's dragflick is straight at the goalkeeper.

3'  Third PC for India! Askarov saves Varun Kumar's attempt after he aims for the right bottom corner.

2' PC for India! Gurinder Singh earns the penalty corner for India. Harmanpreet's first attempt hits the first runner's foot and India is given another corner. Harmanpreet goes for the dummy on the second attempt for Manpreet, who takes the hit but is deflected away by Marsel Askarov.

1' First attack from India comes through the left channel, Akashdeep Singh tries to find Mandeep, but the ball rolls out of play.

1' Here we go! Uzbekistan begins the proceedings from right to left.

The players walk on to the pitch for the national anthems. A win against Uzbekistan will confirm India's place in the semifinal.

Few more minutes to pushback.....

- This is the first time World No 5 India is facing world no 43 team Uzbekistan, which gained qualification to the FIH Series Finals by finishing first in the FIH Series Open in Pakistan in December, 2018.

- India's new coach Graham Reid wants a psychologist to work with few of his players who succumb to pressure in crucial situations.

READ | Reid wants to rope in psychologist to work with mentally fragile Indian players

- India was lacklustre against Poland despite winning 3-1 in the second Pool A match. Captain Manpreet Singh scored a brace to bail it out of the slumber.

READ | India looks to iron out edges ahead of Uzbekistan clash