FIH Hockey 5S: Indian men’s team made a strong start with a draw and a win, women’s team lost both the matches

The Indian men’s hockey team started its campaign in the opening season of the FIH Hockey Five with a 4-3 win over hosts Switzerland before playing out a 2-2 draw against arch-rivals Pakistan on Saturday. However, the Indian women’s team had to face defeats against Uruguay (3-4) and Poland (1-3). The men’s team, led by Gurinder Singh, displayed a scintillating display of fitness, skill and pace in the first match, with Raheel Mohammad scoring two field goals in the second and 10th minutes.

Moirangthem Rabichandra scored a ‘challenge goal’ in the first minute, while skipper Gurinder scored for India in the 19th minute. Winkler Jonas (6th), Reinhard Fabio (11th) and Krusei Patrick (16th) scored for Switzerland. India were leading 3-1 at half time. Hockey five match is of 20 minutes which are in two halves of ten minutes each.

The Indian men’s team took the lead twice against Pakistan in their second match of the day but could not maintain it and drew 2-2. Raheel Mohammed gave India the lead through a field goal in the first minute, followed by Laikat Arshad’s equalizer six minutes later. Gursahibjit Singh once again gave India the lead in the 18th minute but arch-rivals Pakistan equalized with Abdul Rehman’s goal a few seconds before the last whistle.

Coach Graham Reid’s team will take on Malaysia and Poland on Sunday. The Indian women’s team’s campaign, however, started off on a disappointing note. Against Uruguay, Kujur Ajmina (1st and 7th minute) scored two goals while Phalke Vaishnavi Vithal (18th minute) also scored for India. Uruguay’s captain Viana Teresa (2nd, 10th and 19th) made the difference in the match by scoring three goals.

Another goal of the team was scored by Villar Manuela (6th minute). The Indian team, led by Rajni Etimarpu, then suffered a 1-3 loss to Poland. Rashmita Minj scored the only goal for India. The women’s team will face Switzerland and South Africa on Sunday.

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