Azlan Shah Cup shows the scale of Ireland's task in World Cup

Azlan Shah Cup shows the scale of Ireland's task in World Cup

Azlan Shah Cup shows the scale of Ireland's task in World Cup

India thrashed Ireland 4-1 to finish fifth in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup hockey tournament here on Saturday.

Having grabbed the lead on two occasions (1-0 in the 10th minute and 2-1 in the 26th minute), the Indian men's team fumbled in the end in their last round-robin match. Malaysia will meet Argentina in the bronze medal match.

Goals from Shane O'Donoghue, Sean Murray and Lee Cole did the trick and the two teams will now meet again in the fifth/sixth play-off today. Varun Kumar was at the first battery but it was Ramandeep who came up with a great finish to direct the flick into the net with a tap after he had injected the ball perfectly for the dragflicker.

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Though India conceded a goal in the 48th minute, the team's defence remained resolute through the match to win it 4-1.

India was considered to be one of the favourites for a medal contention for the tournament but in the pool games, India played five matches where they suffered three defeats and won one and secured a draw in the other. This time Varun found success, ensuring India got off to a good start with 1-0 lead.

Ireland claimed a shock victory over India in the Azlan Shah Cup in Malaysia to claim their first victory of the tournament. India's next goal came off Gurjant Singh in the 37th minute.

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Amit Rohidas roofed another penalty corner to restore India's lead but then Lisnagarvey's Murray tied things up when he met another Shimmins cross.

India's tactics were spot on from the starting whistle and they earned back-to-back penalty corners in the fifth minute.

Ireland played a much more aggresive game in the second quarter and were awarded a penalty corner for their efforts only for the decision to be overturned after India asked for a video referral. Simranjeet Singh was responsible to win another penalty corner for India in the 56th minute but Varun Kumar's drag was deflected wide by Irish rushers.

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