Murugappa Gold Cup Hockey: ONGC registers easy 4-0 victory over Mumbai

Defending champion ONGC outclassed Mumbai Hockey Association 4-0 to win its first match, while IOC produced a similar scoreline against Chennai Hockey Association on Day 4 of the Murugappa Gold Cup.

Punjab and Sind Bank's Jaskaran Singh scores against Indian Navy during the 92nd All India MCC-Murugappa Gold Cup Hockey tournament at the Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium in Chennai on Sunday.   -  M. VEDHAN

After a playing out a tough 3-3 draw in its opening match against Central Secretariat on Saturday, defending champion Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) outplayed Mumbai Hockey Association to soar to a 4-0 win, while Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) beat a resolute Chennai Hockey Association 4-0 on Day four of the Murugappa Gold Cup hockey on Sunday.

Earlier in the day, Indian Navy suffered its first defeat of the tournament after losing 4-2 to Punjab and Sind Bank.

Both Mumbai and ONGC were on equal terms in the first quarter of an hour, winning two penalty corners each and registering as many shots on goal. The deadlock was broken in the 17th minute when Indian international Shilanand Lakra’s diving finish gave ONGC a 1-0 lead.

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Gurjant Singh doubled ONGC’s lead in the 27th minute when he latched on to a pass from Sumit Kumar on the left flank. Navin Kheratkar went close to scoring for Mumbai in the 33rd minute but his scoop to beat the goalkeeper sailed over the bar.

ONGC dominated the second half and Neelam Xess scored a perfect dragflick into the top corner three minutes into the second half to make it 3-0. ONGC won four corners before the 60th minute and went close on multiple occasions, but Mumbai goalkeeper Sudhir Dixit made a few fine saves to keep the scoreline 3-0. However, he was beaten soon as Jagwant Singh scored off a Gurjant pass to earn ONGC its first victory of this edition.

In the third match of the day, IOC started strongly by winning back-to-back corners against Chennai Hockey Association, which won two corners of its won in the 5th and 6th minute. It was IOC that went into the lead when Affan Yusuf scored from the edge of the circle in the 10th minute.

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Chennai defended in numbers after that and made it difficult for IOC forwards to get a shot on the goal and ended the first half ended 1-0.

IOC aptain V. R. Raghunath broke Chennai’s resolve when he placed his 50th-minute drag flick out of the goalkeeper’s reach and into the net. Five minutes later, Deepak Bejawad made it 3-0 after receiving a right-wing pass from Talwinder Singh. Buoyed by the vociferous local support, Chennai made few late forays into the opposition box, but was unable to find the back of the net. Gurjinder Singh’s strike from a penalty corner in the 62nd minute ended the match 4-0 in IOC's favour.

Results Day 4:

Punjab and Sind Bank (Jaskaran Singh 32’,56’, Gaganpreet Singh 44’, Parvinder Singh 66’) beat Indian Navy (Rana Pratap 37’, Sunny Malik 47’)

ONGC (Shilanand Lakra 17’, Gurjant Singh 26’, Neelam Xess 38’, Jagwant Singh 70’) beat Mumbai Hockey Association (0)

IOC (Affan Yusuf 10’, V.R. Raghunath 50’, Deepak Bejawad 55’, Gurjinder Singh 62’) beat Chennai Hockey Association (0).