High Fliers Soar, Shers Down Warriors, Steelers Hammer Veerans

s5.jpgThe Premier Hockey league has been full of surprises till now with this Tuesday being no exception. Korean You-Hyo-Sik was the star in the match against Chandigarh Dynamos, where he shot a much-needed goal by pouncing upon a deflection by Dynamos’ goalkeeper Baljit Singh off a Len Aiyappa flip. The Korean forward struck a brace as the junior national camper, Cheeyana sounded the board once again for an exciting win. For the Dynamos, who were unbeaten so far in the tournament, this came as a shock defeat as they ruled the game in the first half of this match too. It was the drag flicker, Sandeep Ghosh who proved to be of some saving grace as he scored both their goals. In the first quarter, Dynamos showed some exemplary skills by penetrating attacks and earned two penalty corners in the tenth and thirteenth minute. But soon enough, after the initial start, they squandered as You-Hyo-Sik took the situation in his hand by scoring two goals to even out the situation and slammed the winner in the sixty-seventh minute to win the match 3-2. In the second match of the day, Sher-e-Jalandhar lived up to their name as they hunted down the Maratha warriors 5-4 through sudden unexpected defeat. Salam Akhbar, the Pakistani member of the Shers, played an important role in the victory. Both teams faced a deadlock of 1-1 at the end of regulation time, which continued after 10 minutes of extra time as well till Sher-e-Jalandhar finally emerged victorious defeating the warriors. Salman Akhbar was awarded the Man of the Match. Today, defending champions Orissa Steelers gave Chennai Veerans a 3-0 defeat to notch their first straight win in the fourth edition of the Premier Hockey League at Chandigarh on Wednesday. The match started on a speedy note as Orissa Steelers played defensive hockey right from the start. Ignace Tirkey, Damandeep Singh, Roshan Minz and Sunil Ekka combined well in the attack. They took control of the midfield with Birendra Lakra and Prabodh Tirkey scheming the enemy attacks. William Xalxo was simply outstanding in the defence with good foresight and impressive tackling. The match lost its fizz since the there was a huge time gap between the two goals. It was in the forty-first minute, a move from the right saw Birendra Lakra get the ball in the middle. He dashed down and took an attempt, but rival goalie Sreejesh stopped his effort. Sunil Ekka pounced on the rebound and just tapped in to make it 2-0. In the very next minute, Orissa struck again making it 3-0. Roshan Minz sent a pass from the top of the circle to Joga Singh on the right goal line. Joga received the ball and sent a stinging shot into the goal from zero angles. Chennai custodian Sreejesh tried to pad it away but the ball deflected from his pads and entered the goal.

Now, the Hyderabad Sultans, Sher-e-Jallandhar and Bangalore Hi-Fliers share the third spot with Orissa Steelers with five points each.

The Premier Hockey League has, thus, been extremely exciting till now with lots of astonishing moments and unexpected wins. We hope that it continues and the league becomes the find of many talented players that could drive

India to the top position of the Hockey map of the world as well.

Surbhi Bhatia