Hockey Rio 2016 Olympics: India vs Argentina: Indian hockey team captain PR Sreejesh, and former captain Sardar Singh will be seen in action today (Day 4 - Saturday) too.
Hockey Rio 2016 Olympics: India vs Argentina: Indian hockey team captain PR Sreejesh, and former captain Sardar Singh will be seen in action today (Day 4 – Saturday) too. They may not be facing as tough an opponent as Olympic champions Germany, nevertheless they will pose a big problem. The Argentinians are swift and skillful and if India does not stay focussed on their own game or go into a defensive shell, then they will be punished. But that is something that must not be allowed to happen – Indian fans expect their icons to perform and perform well. India have not won a single match so far after drawing with the Irish and losing to the Germans. Against the Argentinians, nothing less than a win will do. To ensure this skipper PR Sreejesh needs to give a morale boosting talk to his players and ensure they come back strong and attack the Argentinians in good numbers. The pressure must be intense to overcome their resistance. A defensive play will be counter-productive.
Now, with so much at stake and very little achieved, the Indian hockey team will have to really play outstanding hockey to be able to progress further. Undoubtedly they played very well against the Germans and should have won, but against the Irish they Indians were on the backfoot and were lucky to escape with a draw. The Indians are one of the best teams at the Olympic Games. They deserve to be in the top 6. And now is the time to prove they belong at the top. If they manage to bag a medal, then that will be the icing on the cake:
Hockey Rio 2016 Olympics: India vs Argentina: Blow-by-blow account:
* HOOTER! India beat Argentina 2-1; This is India’s first win against this opponent since 2009; India get one foot into the quarterfinal now
* India manage to take the ball away from the rapidly tiring Argentines; no danger now
* India get possession of ball again. Take it into the corner, wasting time is now the name of the game
* Finally, India launch a couple of quick counter-attacks. They were in a scoring position, but Sardara gets confused and hits ball at goalkeeper.
* Argentina supreme at the moment, India lucky to be surviving; they have not carried out even one attack in the last quarter!
* Penalty corner goes abegging, but Argentina come back strong and take shot at the goal – another wonderful save by Sreejesh – a flying leap!
* One more Penalty corner awarded to Argentina; India ask for referral after Sreejesh saves another shot at goal – SUPREME GOALKEEPING!; Indian referral refused, penalty corner against India again
* But wait! Another penalty corner for Argentina; SAVED! By Sreejesh; But penalty corner awarded again!
* Long corner well taken, Sreejesh forced into save – the goal was almost a certainty
* RELIEF! Shot wide! WAIT! Referee signals another penalty corner. India asks for video referral. OVERTURNED! Argentina get a long corner
* Penalty corner for Argentina – second of quarter! Indian punished for stick-check
* Time for coach to give team a talking to, clearly strategy is failing; Argentinians attacking with full force; they are brimming with confidence while Indians are wilting
* India have gone deeper into their shell, not even 1 Indian in Argentine half for minutes on end!
* GOAL! Argentina score from penalty corner. Match gets anxious for India as lead reduced to 2-1
* Argentinians start strong, win first penalty corner of match; India are in a defensive shell
* India lead 2-0 after the third quarter ends; 15 minutes left
* This was India’s first field goal of the tournament
* GOAL! Kothajit Singh scores. India score 2nd goal from running play as Argentinian team fail to clear ball from near goal.
* Having said all that, even if India lose, they will not be out of reckoning to progress into next round
* Second quarter hooter sounds; India go in with one goal lead intact
* Coach must give team a talking to; this is dangerous play by India; they must look to win big
* Coach Oltmans himself looking concerned; he turned into a clockwatcher as the second quarter wound down; Indian players shouting at each other to waste time and allow the hooter to sound
* Indians will be punished severely if they go into their shell any more; they must get back into the attacking frame of mind; sitting on a one goal lead can be counter-productive
* For India teamwork is lacking, however, they are being able to withstand the Argentine onslaught
* Argentinians are looking to control play, have been able to prevent Indians getting into the D area
* Argentinians getting increasingly adventurous, they are attacking n good numbers
* India unable to break down the Argentinian defensive play; they are loosing the ball too easily
* Manpreet gets yellow card for bad challenge; India now playing with one man out
* Second quarter starts
* India take 1-0 lead at the end of the first quarter
* India fortunate that the Argentinians hit the upright almost at the end of the first half; PR Sreejesh was beaten; move came against run of play as Indians lose focus
* India dominating the entire quarter; they are not allowing the Argentinians to get into their rhythm
* India took lead on the stroke of the 8th minute with Chinglensana Singh cracking home from an early penalty corner
* Indians look determined to do well; concentration level is high; the calls to mates while practicing are sharp and loud
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* The Indians and the Argentinians warming up for one of the most important games for both the teams
* India are in 4th spot in Group B