The Indian junior men's hockey team suffered a nail-biting defeat on penalties against Great Britain in the final of the 5th Sultan of Johor Cup here on Sunday.
The Indian junior men’s hockey team suffered a nail-biting defeat on penalties against Great Britain in the final of the 5th Sultan of Johor Cup here on Sunday.
The India colts, who were leveled at 2-2 against Great Britain after full time in the title encounter, could not defend the title for the third consecutive year, losing in the penalty shootout 4-3, to the Great Britain boys.
Great Britain began on a confident note drawing first blood in the 5th minute through a penalty corner goal by Luke Taylor. The Great Britain team who had earlier defeated India in the league matches seemed to be in control of their game until India were rewarded with a penalty corner in the 12th minute, which was beautifully converted into a goal by Harmanpreet Singh to bring India at par with the Great Britain score.
The next 23 minutes in the first half saw a lot of attacks and counter attacks but neither of the teams could capitalize on their form to find the back of the net. The second half began with India pressing hard to take the lead and they were soon rewarded in the 42nd minute with Gurjant Singh pulling off an absolute stunner, giving India the much needed lead in the game. Great Britain however struck back soon after in the 46th minute through Jack Turner to settle the score at 2-2.
The next 24 minutes saw numerous attempts to score from both the teams, but the efficient goal keepers and a strong defense line ensured the match entered the penalty shootout stage. Great Britain finally edged past the Indian colts in the penalty shootout scoring 4 goals as opposed to India’s 3 goals, to be crowned as the new champions of the 5th Sultan of Johor Cup.
India had earlier finished at the top of the table in the league encounter just losing one match ironically to Great Britain. Sumit Kumar and Harmanpreet Singh with 3 goals each have been the top scorers for India in tournament.