New Delhi: India thrashed Australia 6-2 in their fifth and final league game to cruise into the final of the 4th Sultan of Johor Cup U-21 men’s hockey tournament in Johor Bahru, Malaysia, on Saturday. This was their fourth win from five games, and they will take on Great Britain in the final on Sunday. India began aggressively and surprised their opponents with their speed. The team were up in the sixth minute itself, when Harmanpreet Singh converted a penalty corner. Three minutes later, Parvinder Singh made it 2-0, scoring off a field effort.
India continued to attack, and extended their lead in the 19th minute. They outfoxed the Australian defenders and midfielder Simranjeet Singh deflected the ball in to bring up the third goal. Pawan Kumar (23rd) added to Australia’s misery, directing a brilliant pass into the net as India dominated the proceedings. Australia managed to reduce the margin through Brandan Horner, before Harmanpreet converted a penalty stroke to hand India a 5-1 lead in the first half.
Australia came up with a better defensive plan in the second half, but could not stop Harmanpreet from swelling India’s tally (6-1). Horner pulled off a late goal to reduce the margin for Australia.