Army XI pip Western Railway; book final berth against BPCL
Mumbai, Apr 26 (UNI) A K Mahji's indirect penalty corner conversion in the dying minutes of the match gave his team Army XI a place in the finals by beating Western Railway 2-1 to notch their second consecutive win in the semi-final league match of the 44th Bombay Gold Cup hockey tournament at the Mahindra stadium here today.
With this second consecutive win, Army XI also paved the way for Bharat Petroleum to enter the finals as the latter also has two wins from two matches.
These two teams will now clash in the finals on April 29 irrespective of the results of the two semi-final league games to be played on April 28. While both these teams have six points from two games, defending champions Western Railway and Namdhari XI are without any points from two matches and have no chance of making it to the finals.
After a goalless first half, Army XI trailed the Mumbai league champions 0-1, but fought back to restore parity and then clinch the issue at the fag end.
Western Railway took the lead in the 49th minute through an indirect penalty corner goal by Anand Sondkar.
But the armymen equalized through a fine solo effort by S V Sunil with seven minutes left for the hooter.
Then came the match winner from Mahji, which took Army XI into the April 29 summit clash with another Bangalore outfit, Bharat Petroleum.
The teams clash on April 28 in a prelude to the final after Thursday's rest day to decide the top finisher in the round-robin while Western Railway take on Namdhari XI, who also lost their first two matches, in their last league engagement.
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