India registered their first win of the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup with a comfortable 3-0 win against New Zealand in Malaysia on Sunday.

Mandeep Singh opened the scoring for the Roelant Oltamans’ side in the second quarter. Minutes later, Harmanpreet Singh struck a powerful penalty corner to give India a commanding 2-0 lead at half-time. The drag-flicker added a second goal in the final quarter of the game from another penalty corner.

It was the Kiwis who started the game well, putting India under considerable pressure in the first quarter. Goalkeeper PR Sreejesh denied the Black Sticks to open the scoring with a fine save from a penalty corner.

It was one-way traffic from the second quarter as India found their feet in the contest. Mandeep Singh did well to deflect a bouncing ball into the net from close range in the 23rd minute. New Zealand lost their composure from there as India launched a wave of attacks in the second half, testing Devon Manchester’s goal with as many as 11 shots.

India could have ended up with a far more emphatic scoreline had rookie Harjeet Singh not squandered two other penalty corner opportunities. The four-time winners next play holders Australia on May 2.

Brief scores:

  • India 3 (Mandeeep Singh, Harmanpreet Singh x 2) beat New Zealand