HIL: UP hold defending champions Delhi to a 2-2 draw

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Lucknow, Jan 23: Defending champions Delhi Waveriders were held to a 2-2 draw by Uttar Pradesh Wizards in a high-voltage Hockey India League match at Major Dhyan Chand Stadium here today.

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After a barren first quarter, the opening goal of the match was scored in the second quarter when Uttar Pradesh Wizards were awarded a penalty stroke and Jeroen Hertzberger made no mistake from the opportunity.

Delhi (blue) and Uttar Pradesh players in action during the match

Delhi Waveriders made a rapid comeback as Steven Edwards soon scored a leveller in the same quarter, breaching the sturdy guard of goalkeeper PR Sreejesh. Despite a number of attempts by both the teams, no further goals were scored as they were levelled 1-1 at half time.

Delhi Waveriders opened the third quarter with swift attacks while ensuring that the ball remained in their possession but that period did not yield any goal in either of the team's favour. In the fourth quarter, Talwinder Singh sliced-in a beautiful field goal handing over the lead to the defending champions from Delhi.

Unfazed by this, the home side managed to level the scoreline with another field goal that came from the stick of Ramandeep Singh. Delhi Waveriders were awarded a penalty corner in the dying minutes of the match but they could not utilise the chance.

Speaking after the match, Delhi Waveriders captain Sardar Singh said, "We have performed really well in the last two editions of the League and we want to continue the same. We made a good start today but because of a few mistakes the match ended in a draw. We will work on our mistakes and perform better in the next match."

Uttar Pradesh Wizards captain VR Raghunath said, "The start was good but it was tough to play against the defending champions. There was a bit of pressure but we eventually managed to tackle it."

PTI

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