Punjab beat Jharkhand to win men`s hockey gold
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Last Updated: Friday, February 25, 2011, 20:04
  
Ranchi: Punjab defeated Jharkhand 2-0 in a scintillating men's hockey final in the 34th National Games at the Astroturf here on Friday.

After surviving a flurry of attacks from the hosts, Ravi Pal and Sarvanjit Singh struck in the 55th and 64th minutes against the run of the play to give Punjab the gold medal, much to the disappointment of a capacity crowd.

Ravi Pal latched on a ball deflected from Jharkhand goalkeeper Dinesh Ekka following a penalty corner hit, and flicked into the post from the left side to put Punjab in lead.

Nine minutes later, Sarvanjit got all the time in the world to reverse flick one into the net to consolidate Punjab's position.

Jharkhand came close to scoring in the 59th minute when Mathias Minz gave a cross to Inocent Kullu, but the latter failed to make contact.

The match began on a pacy note with the ball switching ends with breathtaking regularity as Punjab defence survived some harrowing time from Jharkhand forwards.

The Lakra brothers -- captain Bimal and Birendra (jr) -- and Kullu kept the Punjab defenders busy.

In the 33rd minute, Bikas Toppo spectacularly moved into the rival defence hoodwinking two players before a defender warded off the goal-bound move.

A minute later, the home team came very close to take the lead when Kullu played a centre, but a well positioned Bikash Toppo failed to connect.

Punjab also had their chances in the first half when forward Dharambir Singh moved through Jharkhand defence, but he shot straight on to the pads of goalkeeper Dinesh Ekka, who had also saved Akashdeep Singh's blistering goal-bound shot.

Chief minister Arjun Munda gave away the gold and silver medals to both the men's and women's hockey finalists.

PTI


First Published: Friday, February 25, 2011, 20:04


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