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Sunday, January 29, 2023

India crashed out of the Hockey World Cup after a shootout heartbreak against New Zealand.

FeaturedSports NewsIndia crashed out of the Hockey World Cup after a shootout heartbreak against New Zealand.

India crashed out of the ongoing Hockey World Cup after the hosts lost 4-5 in a penalty shootout against New Zealand in Bhubaneswar on Sunday. The two teams were tied 3-3 after full time. With this win, New Zealand reached the quarter-finals.

Indian goalkeeper PR Sreejesh made three brilliant saves but was replaced by Krishan Pathak when he injured himself in the process. Pathak also made a crucial save but Shamsher failed to beat the New Zealand goalkeeper in what was his third attempt.

The match saw India dominate possession and penetration but the hosts endured some nervy moments. The action opened with a high intensity from both sides as New Zealand came very close to scoring in the opening quarter. However, a brilliant save from Sreejesh denied the visitors to break the deadlock as the first quarter ended goalless.

India had a strong second quarter as Lalit Kumar Upadhyay scored the opener inside the first three minutes. India were then awarded a penalty corner with just over six minutes remaining in the quarter. The set-piece saw the hosts find the back of the net but the goal was disallowed after a New Zealand referral.

India continued to dominate and were awarded back-to-back penalty corners shortly after, which saw the hosts double their lead after Abhishek’s rebound was pounced on by the New Zealand goalkeeper.

However, with just over a minute remaining in the quarter lane, the New Zealand camp brought some relief as they scored their opening goal.

Varun Kumar then converted a penalty corner to help India restore a two-goal lead. However, New Zealand hit back in style again as Kane Russell scored his second goal in the dying moments of the third quarter.

In the final quarter, New Zealand equalized with Shaun Findlay taking a crucial deflection near the post after a penalty corner. New Zealand came close to taking the lead after the German Phantom’s pass was deflected, finding the New Zealander in an open position. However, his effort was brilliantly saved by Pathak.


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