Bhubaneswar: India lived up to their billing and thrashed South Africa 5-1 in the summit conflict to win the FIH Series Finals hockey tournament here Saturday. Coming into the match as overwhelming favorites, the international no. 5 India played like champions and remained unbeaten.
Drag-flickers Varun Kumar (2d and 49th minutes) and Harmanpreet Singh (eleventh and twenty-fifth) scored a brace every, even as Vivek Sagar Prasad (35th) became the other purpose scorer for India.
South Africa’s sole purpose was scored by way of Richard Pautz inside the 53rd minute.
India and South Africa have already qualified for the final round of the Olympic qualifiers before Saturday’s summit clash.
Earlier in the day, Asian Games champion Japan defeated the USA four-2 to complete 0.33.
The pinnacle two finishers of this match make it to the very last round of the Olympic qualifiers to be held later this year.
Going using world rankings, the Indians had been anticipated to govern the proceedings and that they exactly did that from the phrase move.
India secured their first penalty corner as early as in the 2nd minute, and Varun made no mistake converting the opportunity into aim. In the 11th minute, India got another penalty nook, and this time, Harmanpreet slammed home to make the scoreline 2-zero in favor of the hosts. Seconds before the stop of the primary sector, South Africa got an extraordinary opportunity. However, Nqobile Ntuli’s reverse hit turned away by way of Krishan Bahadur Pathak in front of the Indian aim. Five minutes from 1/2 time, India was awarded a penalty
stroke when Birendra Lakra changed into stick-checked internal South Africa’s ‘D’ through Jethro Eustice, and Harmanpreet made no mistake to make the scoreline three-zero. The waft of the suit persevered within the same vein after the alternate ends, with India dominating the complaints. Five mins into the 0.33 quarter, India extended their lead while Vivek Sagar Prasad scored from near variety after being set up with the aid of Simranjeet Singh.