India go down 1-4 to Spain in Europe Hockey Tour
Sant Cugat del Valles (Spain): Failing to sustain an aggressive start, the Indian men’s hockey team went down to Spain 1-4 in its third match of the ongoing Europe Tour here.
In a a come-from-behind move, Indian forward SV Sunil scored the only goal for his team to level matters in the first quarter, but it was only downhill for the visitors from there.
In the first quarter, both the teams started with an aggressive game plan and attacked on each other’s sides to try to take the early lead.
Spain opened their account in the ninth minute with a stunning field goal to make it 1-0. However, India reacted quickly and attacked fiercely.
In the next minute (10th), VR Raghunath gave a long pass to Sunil, who received the pass in the circle. He dribbled past a defender and hit the ball hard to score the first goal for his team. The Indians then did well to maintain the 1-1 score till end of the quarter.
In the second quarter, both sides stepped-in with more aggression and fought harder. The Indians attacked continuously but failed to finish the passes. After a series of attacks and counter-attacks, the quarter ended goalless with the scoreline reading 1-1.
In the third quarter, both the teams entered the ground with better strategies. However, it was Spain who managed to earn a penalty corner in the 31st minute and Pau Quemada converted it perfectly to take the lead again.
The Indians counter-attacked with their aggressive game-plans and kept the ball in the Spanish half. With their continuous efforts, India could not materialise their passes and the score-line remained 2-1 in favour of Spain at the end of the quarter.
In the final quarter, both sides locked-horns again and looked for opportunities to score goals. Spain earned another penalty corner but it was saved by Indian goalkeeper PR Sreejesh.
In the 53rd minute, Spain managed to earn another penalty corner and this time Jordi Carrera converted it effectively for their third goal of the match. Conceding two unfortunate goals, the Indians counter-attacked with more passion and kept the pressure on their opponents.
However, Spain made a surprise attack from the right flank and Roc Oliva scored the fourth goal for his team in the 56th minute and maintained their 4-1 winning scoreline till time.
India will play their second match against Spain on August 12 here.