The hosts Karnataka had mixed luck on the opening day of 1st Bangalore Cup All-India Hockey Tournament being organized by Hockey Karnataka at KSHA Hockey Stadium in Bangalore. The host men’s team began with a 4-2 victory over Army XI while their women counter part lost 1-3 to Central Railway.
In the other women’s match, MP Academy edged past Western Railway 2-1 with all the goals coming in the second-half. Later, the star-studded Indian Oil Corporation Ltd eased past Air India 3-1. Internationals Deepak Thakur and Prabhjot scored through field goals in the 21st and 25th minutes to put IOCL 2-0 ahead before Gurjinder Singh made it 3-0 in the 40th with a penalty corner conversion. Air India drew some consolation with a 42nd minute strike by Joga Singh.
Karnataka XI’s Kusha KP set up a goal and scored one himself to bag the Player of the match against Army XI as the hosts picked up full points. Karnataka opened the account through Umesh in the 24th minute but Siraju AP drew parity for Army XI in the 32nd through a soft field goal from near the left post. However, with three minutes, Karnataka XI forced a short corner and took the lead once again with a quick drag-flick into the top of the net by Darshan DS. But Army XI equalised with a field goal from Arumugam S three minutes after the break. The home team struck hard in response as Honnur Swamy N scored in the 55th minute and Kusha sealed the issue in the 65th.
In the women’s section, Karnataka XI shot ahead with a late first-half field goal from Sandhya HP, but brilliant set-piece drills from Central Railway, coached by former India goalkeeper Helen Mary, saw the visitors take 3-1 win. Yendala Soundarya deflected from near the right post two stunning penalty corner goals in the 48th and 61st minutes before an equally good solo effort by 21-year old Sandeep Kaur in the 65th minute.
In the first women’s match of the day, MP Academy beat Western Railway 2-1. Ramngaihzuali R and Priyanka Wankhede scored for the winners while a late penalty corner conversion by skipper Sanggai Maimom reduced the margin for the railway team.
Women: Central Railway 3 (Yendala Soundarya 2, Sandeep Kaur) bt Karnataka XI 1 (Sandhya HP). HT: 0-1.
MP Academy 2 (Ramngaihzuali, Priyanka Wankhede) bt Western Railway 1 (Sanggai Maimom). HT 0-0.
Men: Karnataka XI 4 (Umesh KR, Darshan DS, Honnur Swamy N, Kusha KP) bt Army XI 2 (Siraju AP and Arumugam S). HT: 2-1.
IOCL 3 (Deepak Thakur, Prabhjot Singh, Gurjinder Singh) bt Air India 1 (Joga Singh). HT: 2-0.
Saturday (11th Oct)’s fixtures: 10 am: Tamil Nadu vs Haryana (W); 12 Noon: Central Railway vs MP Academy (W); 2 pm: Karnataka XI vs Western Railway (W); 4 pm: Air India vs Bharat Petroleum (M).