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Indian team celebrating after beating Argentina (Image: HI Twitter)
Indian team celebrating after beating Argentina (Image: HI Twitter)

FIH Hockey Pro League: Mandeep scores in dying moments as India edge past Argentina 4-3

ANI | Updated: Mar 21, 2022 08:43 IST


Bhubaneswar (Odisha) [India], March 21 (ANI): Mandeep Singh scored a goal in the dying moments of the match as India edged past 4-3 against 2016 Olympic champions Argentina here at the Kalinga Hockey Stadium.
Hardik Singh scored a goal too while Jugraj Singh scored a brace for India to avenge the previous match defeat against Argentina in the shootout.
Just like the previous match, where India lost 1-3 in a shootout after a 2-2 draw, this match's first quarter too ended without a goal being scored from both sides. The Indian team started the second quarter on a positive note as Mandeep Singh earned a penalty corner for India where Hardik Singh scored for the team on the rebound after Harmanpreet's drag-flick was blocked to give his side a 1-0 lead.
Three minutes later India earned another penalty corner which was converted by drag-flicker Jugraj Singh who scored his fourth international goal to put hosts 2-0 ahead in the match.
After trailing 0-2 Argentina did try hard to get to the scoring sheet and also earned two penalties but failed to convert as Indian goalkeeper Krishan Pathak managed to save it and the Tokyo Olympic bronze medallist went to half-time with a 2-0 lead.
After half-time, the visitors kept on trying for a goal and they earned a penalty corner in the 40th minute of the match which was converted by Nicolas della Torre as Argentina pulled one goal back going into the final quarter.
In the final quarter, Surender Kumar's tackle from the back helped Argentina earn a penalty stroke where the visitors scored to make it 2-2.
In the very next minute, Lalit Kumar Upadhyay helped India earn another penalty corner where Jugraj Singh scored his second goal of the match to put his side 3-2 ahead with only eight minutes remaining in the match.
The Argentines were not willing to give up without a fight and they earned a penalty immediately but goalkeeper Krishan Pathak once again came to India's rescue.
In the 53rd minute, India got yet another penalty which Jugraj Singh converted to make it his hat-trick of the match but his happiness was shortlived as Argentina reviewed the decision and the goal was turned down after a review suggested that India collected the ball inside the circle.
In the 56th minute of the match, Argentina got the equaliser to make it 3-3 as Martin Ferreiro scored for them.
Just like the previous match, it seemed as even this match will go to a shootout. With only 26 seconds remaining a superb pass into the circle from Jugraj Singh helped Mandeep Singh get a brilliant touch with his back to goal to deflect it in. Mandeep's last-minute goal in the previous first leg match helped India get an equaliser and a goal in the second leg match helped the side get a winner as hosts edged past visitors 4-3. India's defender Varun Kumar was named the 'Player of the Match' for his stellar performance. (ANI)

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