Men in Blue bring some cheer to Indians with 7-1 hammering of Pakistan

Indian players celebrate a goal against Pakistan during the Hockey World League Semi-Final match at London yesterday Indian players celebrate a goal against Pakistan during the Hockey World League Semi-Final match at London yesterday 

This may not be the Pakistan hockey team one is used to seeing, but neither was the scoreline of 7-1 in favour of India in the third league match of the Hero Hockey World League Semi-finals at the Olympic Park.

Not a single player in this team was born, when India was beaten 7-1 in the 1982 Asian Games final in New Delhi. But it is doubtful if any of these players do not know of that defeat, which still rankles Indian fans and players. Yesterday’s match was played on the same day.

The Lee Vally Hockey Centre saw a sizeable crowd for the first time and the announcer giving periodic updates from The Oval, where the cricket teams from the two countries were contesting the ICC Champions Trophy final.

Even before the hockey teams took the field, the Pakistan cricket team had run up a huge score in cricket. But the hockey team entered the field with a great sense of purpose.

India opened the account via a penalty corner when Harmanpreet Singh beat the goalkeeper hands down.

The second quarter saw Talwinder score twice within three minutes to end Pakistan’s hopes. Into the third quarter, Harmanpreet struck in the 33rd minute.

Akashdeep made it 5-0 in the 47th minute and Pradeep Mor added a sixth in the 49th minute. Pakistan got a consolation goal from Umar Bhutta Muhammad in the 57th minute.

India rounded off the day with Akashdeep making it 7-1. Following their third win in as many games India moved to the top of the table with nine points. The Netherlands, who India meet in the last league match, will play Canada today.