Tamil Nadu crash out
By S S Shreekumar | ENS - BANGALORE
01st October 2012 10:33 AM
It’s Haryana vs Punjab and Karnataka vs Air India in the semifinals of the 2nd Hockey India’s Senior National Hockey Championships. Holders Haryana downed Manipur 4-2 in the first quarterfinal while runners-up Karnataka defeated Tamil Nadu 2-0. Punjab swamped Indian Railways 5-1 while Air India flew past Jharkhand 4-2 in the quarterfinals at the KSHA Stadium on Sunday.
Haryana went on the offensive from the start with the two internationals Sardar Singh and Didar Singh doing all the work from midfield. India striker Bharat Chikkara opened the scoring in the third minute. Sardar and Didar combined to send Karamjit Singh away on the right. As the cross came in, Chikkara diverted it goalwards and the ball went in off the stick of the onrushing goalkeeper Bisam Singh. He made it 2-0 three minutes later when Didar sent Antil away on the right. Chikkara this time made a confident placement that brooked no answer.
Manipur managed to reduce the margin through Jayantakumar Meitel in the 31st mintue as his penalty corner effort went in beating goalkeeper Nanak Singh all ends up. But after keeping possession and dominating the game, Haryana added two more through penalty corner conversions. Mandeep Antil was on target in the 43rd and Didar Singh similarly the next minute. Meitel scored again on the hour off another short corner but that was all they could achieve.
Karnataka struck twice in the first half as M K Mudappa put them ahead in the 29th minute deflecting home a cross from Pundalik Bellary past goalkeeper P R Sreejesh. P L Thimmanna increased the tally in the 32nd. He rushed into the D and got a touch to a long hit from the centre-line from skipper Vikramkanth as it rolled in. Punjab downed Indian Railways 5-1. Punjab, who led 3-1 at half-time after conceding an early goal, were stretched by Railways. Punjab’s penalty corner specialist Gurjinder Singh again led the scorers’ list with two conversions after Gurbaj Singh opened the account in the 7th minute finding the boards following a goalmouth scramble.
Akashdeep Singh and Prabhdeep Singh scored the other Punjab goals while Railways’ B Horo struck in the fifth minute. Air India overcame fighting Jharkhand 4-2 in the last quarterfinal. Air India led by a goal at half time as skipper Cheeyana split the defence with a brilliant through pass for former India skipper Arjun Halappa. The mercurial forward scooped in from close quarters.
Jharkhand restored parity three mintues after the break as Diwakar Ram converted a penalty corner with a low swipe. But just three mintues later Ram turned villain as he scored a own goal deflecting in a Shivendra Singh centre after Halappa had sent the former away on the right.
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