India will be thoroughly disappointed to return empty handed. For, this was a team that was considered to win a gold medal here. It had the talent and possessed the potential to do so. Against New Zealand, they were guilty of failing to convert their chances. Tonight, they couldn’t create enough against England. Ahead of the Asian Games and the World Cup, Sjoerd Marijne will look to quickly rectify the issues – primarily, the penalty corner conversion – that are plaguing the team. But India won perhaps the best men’s match of the tournament – the 4-3 triumph against England. Would’ve been a memorable tournament had they ended up with a medal.
|Goals||26' (PC) Varun Kumar|| 6' (PC) Sam Ward|
42' (PC) Sam Ward
04:00 pm IT’S ALL OVER FOR INDIA! England win the bronze medal. That referral in the end proved extremely crucial! For, India could have gotten a chance to equalise. But England held on despite India playing with an extra attacking option. Credit to their defenders for thwarting the Indian attack (which was mediocre in this game). The Indians also got only one penalty corner, which they converted.
03:54 pm India 1-2 England (2 minutes left in Q4): Drama. India are inches away from the England net. Seems like a penalty corner... no, a penalty stroke... no, we can’t ascertain. The England goalie George Pinner is appealing. Oh, no penalty corner for India. Looks like Akashdeep/Mandeep has obstructed the goalkeeper. Time’s running out, the bronze medal is slipping away for the men in blue.
03:54 pm India 1-2 England (3 minutes left in Q4): India are doing what they did against New Zealand. They send PR Sreejesh off, Harmanpreet is wearing the goalkeeper jersey so India can have an extra attacking option. Their defence is vulnerable. But now, it’s a necessary gamble.
03:50 pm India 1-2 England (10 minutes left in Q4): Five minutes to go and England miss another penalty corner. Time’s running out for India though. Can they do what they did in the group stages against England? (They’d equalised and scored the winner in less than two minutes!)
03:45 pm India 1-2 England (10 minutes left in Q4): Penalty corner! Haha, England try two reverse pushes before striking during the penalty corner. Clever ploy, poor execution though. The striker had very little aim and couldn’t do much. Another PC wasted. But England still have the lead.
03:45 pm India 1-2 England (10 minutes left in Q4): Liam Ansell tries to flick the ball into the Indian net from the left flank. “Nah, this won’t get past me,” says Sreejesh, as he casually pushes it away.
Third quarter stats
03:37 pm India 1-2 England (End of third quarter): India are trailing by a goal in this bronze medal match in the third quarter. Both teams have been good at penalty corners. Credit to England for not letting India another penalty corner. They just got one, and scored one. The pace of the Indians in the third quarter was a little slow. They will give everything they have in their final quarter of this tournament.
03:33 pm India 1-1 England (2 minutes left in Q3): GOAL! Penalty corner for England. And they score! It’s Sam Ward again with the finishing touches. Superb strike. He doesn’t just hit the ball, he bludgeons it. No way for Sreejesh to catch that.
03:28 pm India 1-1 England (5 minutes left in Q3): Still not many chances. Circle entries, yes. But no teams have gotten close to the net. Has been a dull quarter so far.
03:24 pm India 1-1 England (11 minutes left in Q3): Okay, the Indians are keeping the ball in the midfield deliberately. Two players are passing to each other from two sides of the mid-field. What’s the ploy? To frustrate England? Well, it’s frustrating to watch.
03:10 pm India 1-1 England (End of first half): It’s been India’s half. They had the ball for most of the time. Didn’t create a lot of chances. But they had England on the backfoot. Got a penalty corner as a result and Varun converted it superbly.
Here are the stats:
03:05 pm India 1-1 England (3 minutes left in Q2): GOAL! Varun Kumar converts a superb penalty corner to level the score for India. He picks the spot, unhurried, and unleashed the stroke precisely at his target. His second penalty corner goal of the tournament. We’ve gotta game on our hands now.
02:58 pm India 0-1 England (9 minutes left in Q2): India’s got the ball for the most part in this quarter so far. They are trying to enter the England circle. They haven’t been able to do that with much success. England’s looking good on the defence. Just the two attempts at scoring a field goal for India. No other chances.
02:55 pm India 0-1 England (12 minutes left in Q2): Game’s being played in the midfield now. No big chances for both teams. India need to equalise early to breathe easy. They are looking good so far though.
02:50 pm India 0-1 England (End of first quarter): Indians made many forays into the England circle. But their defenders have so far not yielded. India needs to keep the pressure on. They haven’t gotten any penalty corner chances so far. If and when they do in the second half, they should make it count. For, that’s one area they have not been up to the mark in this tournament.
Their PC stats:-
First match vs Pakistan: 1/4
Second match vs Wales: 3/13
Third match vs Malaysia: 2/9
Fourth match vs England: 2/3
Fifth match vs New Zealand: 1/9
Total Penalty Corner conversions: 9/38
02:42 pm India 0-1 England (6 minutes left in Q1): GOAL! Penalty corner for England. And they have converted it. So much power in that drag flick by Sam Ward. Blasted it. The rebound almost reached the centre line. He lets out a mighty roar after giving the lead for England.
02:30 pm Good afternoon, one and all. How’s been your Saturday so far? Hope you have been enjoying our coverage of the Commonwealth Games. Another good day for India at Gold Coast. (Wait, if you don’t know what’s happening, follow our live blog here to update yourself.) But not a great day for Indian hockey so far. The women’s team crashed to a 0-6 defeat to England in their bronze medal game. It’s up to the men, now, to bring home a medal for the hockey team. Manpreet & Co have beaten England before in the group stage. So, they will be hopeful of winning the bronze today.