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PSB, Punjab Police in final
January 29, 2004 18:51 IST
Punjab and Sind Bank and Punjab Police set up a final date in the All India DDA Invitational Hockey tournament at the Shivaji Stadium at New Delhi on Thursday.
In the semi-finals, PSB defeated Army XI 3-1, while Punjab Police got the better of Indian Oil Corporation 1-0.
Both the games were drab affairs as they failed to generate any exciting play. In the end the teams which latched on to the opportunities emerged victorious.
In the first semi-final, it was the Army XI who had the larger share of ball possession and number of shots at the goal. But the armymen lacked the precision required inside the box which cost them dearly in the final outcome.
On the other hand, the PSB forwards made most of the few chances that came their way to turn the result in their favour.
For PSB Ajit Pal Singh scored a brace (8th min, 69th min) and Jatinder Pal Singh (25th min) chipped in with one while Avtar Singh (48th min) found the net for Army XI.
Though the standard of the games failed to keep the handful of spectators interested, they were witnessed heated arguments between Army XI and PSB and also a handful controversial decisions by referee Ripu Daman.
As many as three decisions, including one penalty stroke awarded to PSB, by Daman were reversed after vehement protests by the players.
In the other semi-final, Punjab Police's Gurvinder Singh showed great presence of mind to find the winner on a through pass by Parbdeep Singh in the 24th minute.
With none of the teams making any constructive moves the scoreline remained unchanged in the second half even though Police got a couple of chances to increase their lead thanks to some sloppy play by IOC.
The cops had an unlikely visitor at the beginning of the match when penalty corner specialist Jugraj Singh, still recovering from the injuries he suffered in a car accident last August, came to meet them.
Jugraj, who was sent to USA for treatment on his multiple fractures, talked to the players and also had a chat with the IOC team before the start of the match.