HIL: Punjab stops Kalinga’s dream run

Punjab Warriors succeeded in stopping the dream run of Kalinga Lancers, winning 4-1 in a HIL tie that saw many twists and turns at the Kalinga Stadium here on Sunday.

Both Warriors and Lancers have 22 points each after this match.   -  Lingaraj Panda

Punjab Warriors succeeded in stopping the dream run of Kalinga Lancers, winning 4-1 in a HIL tie that saw many twists and turns at the Kalinga Stadium here on Sunday.

It was disappointing for the holiday crowd to watch the home team go down, but they witnessed rich hockey that was entwined with aggression and persistence.

Though Lancers drew the first blood in the second half through a penalty corner (Moritz Fuerste-Glenn Turner) it was a renewed Punjab Warriors which scored two field goals; one by Australian Simon Orchard and the other by Jasjit Singh in the final quarter.

Wasted opportunities

Warriors got four back-to-back penalty corners but failed to convert as the Lancers defence and custodian Andrew Charter stood resolute. In all, Warriors got five penalty corners but failed to convert any.

Pressing hard, Lancers dominated the first half but later the Sardar Singh-led Warriors got its act together through some fine midfield excellence. An angling cross saw Simon Orchard skidding towards the box and tapping the ball in. Later Jasjit Singh swelled the lead to four by sending in a rasping shot.

Both Warriors and Lancers have 22 points each after this match.

Lancers excelled in ball possession in the first quarter as Gurjinder Singh, Dharamvir Singh, Turner and Quirjin Caspers tried their best to score. The second quarter saw Turner pressing hard for the elusive goal and most of the game was played close to the Warriors’ circle.

Warriors looked more focussed, accelerated the pace, and increased circle penetrations to prevent the hosts from making a comeback. Lancers, too, failed in penalty conversion.

In the dying minutes of the game, Lancers tried to convert penalty corners into field goals but the efforts backfired.

Lancers will play defending champion Ranchi Rays on Monday here and a victory will take it to the semifinals. Warriors will take on Uttar Pradesh Wizards in Lucknow on February 10.

The result: Punjab Warriors 4 (Simon Orchard 2 FG, Jasjit Singh 2 FG) bt Kalinga Lancers 1 (Glenn Turner PC).

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