Punjab and Services won Women’s and Men’s gold at 35th National Games

Punjab defeated Haryana by 3-1 to win the women’s hockey gold at 35th National Games in Kerala, while Services outclassed Odisha by 8-2 to grab the men’s hockey gold medal at New Hockey Stadium, Kollam. Jharkhand eves finished third by defeating Odisha 2-0, while Haryana men edged past Jharkhand in nerve wrecking shoot-out by 7-6 to win men’s hockey bronze medal.

Services: Men's Hockey Gold Medalists at 35th National Games 2015, Kollam (Kerala)

Services: Men’s Hockey Gold Medalists at 35th National Games 2015, Kollam (Kerala)

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Ranchi Rays beat Punjab Warriors to enter semis of Hero HIL 2015

The hosts Ranchi Rays edged past table toppers Jaypee Punjab Warriors by 3-2 to become 2nd team to confirm their place in semi-finals of Hero Hockey India League 2015. It was an extraordinary contest between two top teams in front of jam-packed Astroturf Hockey Stadium in Morabadi, Ranchi.

Birendra Lakra and Mandeep Singh and Ranchi Rays team thanking the supporters at Ranchi during Hero Hockey India League 2015

Birendra Lakra and Mandeep Singh and Ranchi Rays team thanking the supporters at Ranchi during Hero Hockey India League 2015

Jaypee Punjab Warriors conceded an early goal in the 13th minute and the second goal in the 45th minute leaving them trailing the game 2-0. Jaypee Punjab Warriors finally made a come-back in the game by leveling the scores 2-2 in the fourth quarter, but wasting no time Ranchi Rays came back strong and scored the third goal and went on to win the game. Post the match, both Ranchi Rays and Jaypee Punjab Warriors are locked at 29 points at the points table. Continue reading →

Services vs Odisha (M) and Haryana vs Punjab (W) in Finals of National Games 2015

Services and Odisha are set to play the men’s final, while Haryana and Punjab playing in Women’s final of hockey at 35th National Games has reached its business end at New Hockey Stadium, Kollam, Kerala.

Hockey at Kerala National Games 2015 in Kollam

Hockey at Kerala National Games 2015 in Kollam

In two exhilarating semi final games of men’s hockey, Jharkhand took on SSCB in the first match whilst Odisha clashed with Haryana in the next, with a single intention to defeat their opponent and reach into the all-important finals before walking away with the title. While SSCB defeated Jharkhand by 5-1, Odisha and Haryana fought it out in the shoot out where Odisha scored in the sudden death to emerge victorious and book a berth in the finals.

In the women’s section, Haryana took on Jharkhand and Odisha women challenged the mighty Punjab, early morning today. Whilst Haryana and Jharkhand battled it out in the Shoot-Out phase with Haryana finally winning the game in the sudden death, Punjab recorded a comfortable triumph over Odisha as it blanked the latter 3-0. Continue reading →

Upbeat Dabang Mumbai to host UP Wizards tomorrow in Hero HIL

After recording season’s first win, upbeat Dabang Mumbai will host Uttar Pradesh Wizards on their home ground, Mahindra Hockey Stadium, Mumbai tomorrow (11th February, full schedule here) in ongoing Hero Hockey India League 2015.

Pardeep Mor and Wouter Joulie of Uttar Pradesh Wizards in training session during Hero Hockey India League 2015

Pardeep Mor and Wouter Joulie of Uttar Pradesh Wizards in training session during Hero Hockey India League 2015

With the Hero Hockey India League 2015 entering the second phase, the teams are now expected to play more intensely with an eye on the knockouts. While Dabang Mumbai will play to claim its second win post their convincing win over Kalinga Lancers in their last outing, Uttar Pradesh Wizards will be looking at getting back to their winning ways post their recent defeat against Ranchi Rays. Continue reading →

Tough Match for Punjab Warriors as they face Ranchi Rays in Ranchi

Jaypee Punjab Warriors, who have already sealed their place in the Semi-Final of Hero Hockey India League 2015, will face Ranchi Rays at Ranchi tomorrow, February 10, 2015> This will be the first clash between the top two teams of the points’ table and a possible pre-match of the semi-final. Jaypee Punjab Warriors is leading the table with 28 points where as Ranchi Rays is at second place with 24 points.

Youngsters Sumit Toppo and Affan Yousuf in Jaypee Punjab Warriors' training session at Ranchi during Hero Hockey India League 2015

Youngsters Sumit Toppo and Affan Yousuf in Jaypee Punjab Warriors’ training session at Ranchi during Hero Hockey India League 2015

Ranchi Rays, who have remained unbeatable at their home ground with two draws and two wins, will face a tough challenge against the star-studded Jaypee Punjab Warriors who have specialised players in every department. Leading from the front is the top goal-scorer Sandeep Singh, who scored a hat-trick against the defending champions Delhi Waveriders in their previous match and very much specialised in penalty corners. The Barry Dancer boys will stick to their strategy of earning maximum penalty corners and leave it to Sandeep Singh to convert them. Ranchi Rays Head Coach Harendra Singh has to think out of the box to restrict Sandeep Singh from scoring goals in the penalty corners, otherwise they may have to see a disappointing score-line in the first half. Continue reading →

First Win for Dabang Mumbai, beat Kalinga Lancers 2-1

Hosts Dabang Mumbai kept their nerves to edge past Kalinga Lancers by 2-1 to record their first win in Hero Hockey India League. With the win in a must win match for both the teams, the Mumbai side mentored by former Indian Hockey Captain Viren Rasquinha earned five points to close the point’s gap with Delhi Waveriders and be in contention for a place in semi final.

Dabang Mumbai celebrate a goal during Hero Hockey India League 2015

Jeremy Hayward of Dabang Mumbai celebrate his goal during Hero Hockey India League 2015

Opening seconds of the first quarter saw Kalinga Lancers immediately attack the D of Dabang Mumbai and Lucas Vila missed a golden opportunity to score for his team. Five minutes into the quarter Dabang Mumbai got their first penalty corner but was missed by Tom Boon. Both sides continued to defend flawlessly, not giving the other to score and take the lead, resulting in the session ending without any goals getting scored. Continue reading →