Chandigarh, Jan 3 (UNI) With the completion of the league phase, semi-finalists have been spotted in the fourth edition of the Premier Hockey League being played at the Sector 42 Hockey Stadium here.
After a day's rest tomorrow, strong contenders and local favourites Chandigarh Dynamos will face well-balanced Hyderabad Sultans in the first semi-final and Bangalore Hi-Fliers will lock horns with defending champions Orissa Steelers on January 5.
At the conclusion of the league programme, Chandigarh Dynamos and Bangalore Hi-Fliers were tied with 14 points each but Dynamos topped the standing on the basis of better goal difference. There was a two-way tie between Orissa Steelers and Hyderabad Sultans for the third place with 11 points each. By virtue of their better goal difference, Steelers pushed Sultans to the fourth position.
Maratha Warriors (7 pts), Sher-e-Jalandhar (5) and Chennai Veerans (1), who finished in that order in the seven-team league behind the qualifiers, made their exit from the tournament.
Orissa Steelers today became the fourth team to qualify for semi-final at the expense of runners-up Sher-e-Jalandhar by 2-0 in the last league match. Steelers, led by Olympian Dilip Tirkey, scored one goal in each half to college three points for qualifications. Ignace Tirkey (22nd) and Birendra Lakra scored field goals to show Shers the exit door. In their desperate attempts, Shers scored penalty corners in the 64th and 69th minutes but failed to convert any one.
Birendra Lakra was declared man of the match. Dilip Tirkey was shown green cards in the 30th and 49th minutes for wrong tacklings.
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