Namdhari XI, Railways Sports Control Board, Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy and Hockey Puducherry scored wins in their league engagements to keep a clean slate in the third Hockey India Senior Men’s National Championship 2013 organised by Hockey Maharashtra. The championship is being played at the Shiv Chhattrapati sports complex and Major Dhyan Chand hockey stadium.
In a Group B match, Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy scored a 5-1 win over Chhattisgarh Hockey. Raju Singh opened the scoring for the MP team in the 10th minute. Sarfraj Khan added a second in the 17th minute but Arman Qureshi’s brace sealed the game for them. Vikas Chaudhari scored in the 39th minute as the team from MP looked set to run away with the game. Prince Yadav pulled one back for Chhattisgarh, scoring in the 50th minute.
Hockey Puducherry got the better of Tripura Hockey 7-5 in an exciting game. Puducherry got off to a great start, scoring a goal in the fourth minute. However, Tripura restored parity just two minutes later and the game seemed to have opened up. Both teams traded goals, but Puducherry’s attackers made sure that they pounced on almost everything that came their way, giving themselves an important victory.
In Group F, Namdhari XI handed Jammu & Kashmir their second consecutive defeat registering a 12-1 win over the hapless side from India’s northern-most tip. Gurpreet Singh and Gurwinder Singh were in prime form for Namdhari XI as they scored four goals each.
Railway Sports Promotion Board chugged on with a crushing 13 -1 win over Sashastra Seema Bal. Jasjeet Singh hammered four goals for the railwaymen while Sanjay Bir scored a hat-trick as the Railways team made mincemeat of their opposition, regularly opening their defence up with some fluid passing moves.
In Group D encounters, Hockey Haryana scraped past a spirited Mumbai Hockey Association 5 -3. Former India international Bharat Chikara brought Haryana level in the eighth minute after Fahim Khan’s fifth-minute goal had given Mumbai the lead. Jitender Saroha and Jagwant scored two more before half-time as Haryana seemed to settle in as the game progressed. Chikara soon completed his hat-trick as he smashed two more goals in the second half. Former India international Dhananjay Mahadik briefly raised hopes of a comeback for Mumbai, scoring in the 56th minute but the Haryana defense did well to close out the game.
Uttar Pradesh Hockey scored a resounding 3-0 win over hosts Hockey Maharashtra to hand them their second loss in two days. In a late-night encounter on Tuesday, Hockey Andaman and Nicobar scraped past the hosts 4-3. Chandan Singh opened the scoring for UP in the 33rd minute as he gave the finishing touches to a well-crafted move. In the 66th minute, Chandan Singh again got his name on the scoresheet as he converted a penalty corner. Siddhartha Shankar scored the third and final goal in the 69th minute to consign Maharashtra to a second successive defeat.
A salvo of five field goals by Gunasekaran in the 24, 42, 47, 58 and the 60th minute helped Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu score a big 8-2 win over Hockey Assam in their first match of the tournament. Ashok Kumar, Kiran Raj and Arul Stalin David were the other scorers for Tamil Nadu. Pawan Malik and Sandeep Kumar scored for Assam.