Goalkeeper PR Sreejesh starred as India beat second-ranked Australia via penalty shootout 2-2 (3-1) in the second game of their third tie in the Men’s FIH Pro League on Saturday at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneshwar. Also Read - On-Field Communication The Key For India: Defender Nisha
In the first quarter, both sides got a feel of each other and settled into the game yielding no goals like the first match where the visitors opened the scoring in the sixth minute. Australia’s Trent Mitten finally broke the deadlock in the 23rd-minute when Krishan Pathak was beaten on his near post allowing the Aussie space to make his run. Also Read - Say Anything Bad About Virat Kohli And You Get Absolutely Hounded: Pat Cummins
India’s penalty corner specialist Rupinder Pal Singh levelled things within the next two minutes. It took merely two more minutes for the hosts to take the lead, once again via PC, this time from Harmanpreet Singh. The crowd at the Kalinga Stadium went berserk after that strike. Also Read - India Men's Hockey Team Plays Out 4-4 Draw Against Argentina in Second Practice Match
After that, India settled down and started to defend as Australia started attacking more with more numbers playing in front. The visitors also had a goal cancelled after a video referral that went against them in the third quarter.
A minute into the last quarter, Australia equalised thanks to Aran Zalewski. It was a great deflection from the Aussie that ended up at the back of the net.
There were no more goals scored in the fourth quarter which forced a penalty shootout. Eventually, India beat Australia 3-1 in the penalty shootout to clinch the game and level the two-match series 1-1.
For Australia – Nathan Ephraums, Jake Harvey, Daniel Beale and Matt Dawson missed their respective penalties, whereas for India, Vivek Prasad, Lalit Upadhyay and Harmanpreet scored.
India will play Germany next on April 25-26.