The encounter between Jharkhand and Chandigarh was billed as the match to watch in the Hockey India-13th Senior National men’s championship here on Wednesday, with a knockout spot (quarterfinals) on the line.
Despite the hype, the match failed to live up to expectations in the first half by remaining goalless. However, in the next two quarters, the tie came to life resulting in Jharkhand scripting a fantastic 2-0 win and topping Pool F.
Earlier, Bengal won its second successive match in a Pool E tie, with a majestic 10-0 triumph over Jammu & Kashmir. Bengal will clash with Manipur on Thursday and the winner will top the group and enter the quarterfinals.
From the third quarter, Jharkhand upped the ante with quick moves that took the Chandigarh defence by surprise. In one such move, Prem Kerketta converted from a melee in the box.
Chandigarh had a really good chance to equalise after it earned a penalty stroke soon after. However, in the subsequent video referral, the stroke was taken back.
Jharkhand scored its second of the match after Joseph Kongari’s fierce cross from the right was deftly deflected by Anurad Bhengra.
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