WSH: Pune Strykers and Sher-e-Punjab win

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Pune and Punjab won
Mumbai, Mar 2: Pune Strykers slammed in three goals in the last quarter in the space of 10 minutes to edge out Mumbai Marines 7-5 in a rousing encounter in the World Series Hockey at the MHA-Mahindra Stadium here on Thursday night.

Pune Strykers had to thank their penalty corner expert Gurpreet Singh who notched up four goals, including two in the last quarter, for their come-from-behind victory over Mumbai who led 4-3 at the halfway stage of the match.

Apart from Gurpreet, the other goal scorers for Pune — who took a 3-1 lead in the first quarter before allowing Mumbai to come back — were Mario Almada, Lungile Tsolekile and Roshan Minz, who scored the last goal of the match.

For Mumbai, who lacked an effective penalty corner drag-flicker and who forced only five penalty corners as compared to their rivals’ 13, speedy front-liner Joga Singh scored thrice while Aljub Ekka and Troy Sutherland completed the tally.

Pune, for whom Vikas Pillay played a crucial role in the midfield in the first three quarters, went ahead very early in the match through a well-struck deflection into the far corner of the rival goal by Argentinian forward Almada.

Pune then forced two penalty corners in succession and their drag-flicker Gurpreet Singh scored off the second, with an effort to the left of Mumbai custodian Adrian D’Souza. The first quarter ended with Pune up 2-0.

Mumbai reduced the margin immediately after resumption in the second quarter through Australian Troy Sutherland. But Pune hit back within a minute to take a 3-1 lead through Gurpreet. Mumbai fought back through Joga Singh but as the match progressed, it was Pune who came storming back to notch up a fine win.

Sher-e-Punjab crush Chennai Cheetahs

In Jalandhar, the home crowd had plenty of reasons to celebrate as favourites Sher-e-Punjab crushed Chennai Cheetahs 5-2. Mandeep Antil (7th minute), Harpreet Nagra (34th), Prabhjot Singh (49th & 70th) and Gagan Ajit Singh (57th) scored for Sher-e-Punjab while Pakistani star Imran Warsi struck a brace for the Cheetahs with both his goals coming off drag-flicks (24th and 63rd minutes).

Mandeep got the hosts off to a fine start, slotting home within seven minutes before Warsi equalised for the Cheetahs in the second quarter. Harpreet then struck from the spot as Sher-e-Punjab led 2-1 at half-time. Former India star Gagan Ajit Singh then fired home a superb goal but Warsi pulled one back for Cheetahs. Prabhjot then wrapped it up for the hosts in the final minute.

Results

Sher-E-Punjab beat Chennai Cheetahs 5-2

Pune Strykers beat Mumbai Marines 7-5

Today's Matches (March 2)

7.00 PM: Delhi Wizards vs Karnataka Lions (Delhi)

9.00 PM: Mumbai Marines vs Bhopal Badshahs (Mumbai)

PTI

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