Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Sandeep Singh dazzles in Jaypee Punjab Warriors’ 7-3 rout over debutants Kalinga Lancers



Jaypee Punjab Warriors maintained their winning momentum in the 2nd Hero Hockey India League, walloping debutants Kalinga Lancers 7-3 at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneshwar.

The Barry Dancers-coached Punjab outfit, who picked up the pieces after losing the tournament opener to last year’s runners-up Delhi Waveriders, pressed the attacking button from the outset and marched into the lead through a Dharamvir Singh strike in the 5th minute of play.

The goal stunned the home crowd to silence as the Lancers sought to regroup, but the Warriors held on to the solitary goal lead at the end of the opening quarter.

Jaypee Punjab Warriors dished out belligerent hockey in the second quarter and kept asking probing questions to the Kalinga Lancers’ defence. Soon the Orange brigade were left with no answers as Argentinean Lucas Rey converted their first penalty corner off a rebound in the 24th minute. Drag-flicker Sandeep Singh also got into the goal-scoring act rifling in a flick in the 28th minute to make the scoreline 3-0.

The Warriors were almost flowing like a river and soon netted their fourth goal through talented Affan Yousuf in the 31st minute. Australian Simon Orchard further compounded the woes of the Odisha outfit, making it 5-0 in the 33rd minute.

Trailing 0-5 at the end of the second quarter, Kalinga Lancers finally gave their home crowd something to rejoice about. Argentinean drag-flick expert Gonzalo Peillat converted their first penalty corner in the 39th minute.

The joy of the Lancers was short-lived as Sandeep Singh made the most of Warriors’ third penalty corner in the 41st minute – the scoreline read 6-1. Gonzalo Peillat converted another short corner to reduce the margin in the 44th minute, but Warriors ended the third quarter on a strong note, with celebrated striker Jamier Dwyer scoring the 7th goal off a PC rebound in the 48th minute.

Kalinga had a monumental task of coming into the contest after trailing 2-7 at the end of the third quarter. The home side did not quite throw in the towel and scored their third goal after former Indian striker Mandeep Antil tapped home from close range in the 60th minute.

With this win, Jaypee Punjab Warriors leapfrogged to the top of the points table, collecting 11 points from three games.

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