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Korea, M'sia to play Asian Cup qualifying matches at neutral venue

Korea, M'sia to play Asian Cup qualifying matches at neutral venue”

India who started off with a 1-1 draw against Korea in their first Super 4 match have picked up their form and scored some spectacular goals and displaying what they are best known for, one-touch attacking hockey.

It was a ideal display of attacking hockey as the Indian strikers toyed with the Malaysian defence with short passes, one-touch ball delivery to pump five lovely field goals.

However, under new coach Sjoerd Marijne and led by central midfielder Manpreet Singh, India turned things around in style as Akashdeep Singh, Harmanpreet Singh, SK Uthappa, Gurjant Singh, SV Sunil and Sardar Singh pumped in six strikes to put the game beyond the reach of Malaysians, who scored two late goals to reduce the deficit.

Malaysia's goals came from the sticks of Razie Rahim (50th - PC) and Ramadan Rosli (59th). It was Malaysia's first loss in the event.

India were under pressure having lost the last two matches to Malaysia - at the Azlan Shah and then in the Hockey World League at London - but yesterday they wrested the initiative and plundered goals.

The win propelled India to the top of Super 4 stage.

India seemed a little rusty against South Korea, where they secured an unimpressive 1-1 victory thanks to a Gujrant Singh last-minute equalizer.

Earlier in the day, Korea and Pakistan played out a 1-1 draw in another Super 4s match. India will now face arch-rivals Pakistan in the next match on Saturday.

Despite enjoying the lions share of possession and having better scoring chances, the Indian strikers found it hard to breach a resolute Korean defence.

India defeated Pakistan 3-1 in group stage and topped their pool stage after beating Japan, Bangladesh and Pakistan.



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