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India win U-21 title in Poland
June 04, 2006 20:14 IST
Indian juniors won the Under-21 six-nation invitational hockey tournament at Gniezno, Poland, by keeping their cent per cent record intact when they defeated the hosts 3-0 in their final outing on Sunday.
The Indians grabbed the maximum 15 points from five matches to emerge champions.
Though the Indians were below their best on Sunday, converting only one of their 14 penalty corners, their domination of proceedings was pretty obvious.
Sardara Singh converted a penalty corner to give India the lead in the eighth minute. Seven minutes later, Raghunath made no mistake from the penalty spot to double the lead.
The third goal came from the stick of captain V Raja, who scored in the 44th minute after a brilliant solo run.
The home side was no match for the Asian giants who conceded only one penalty corner.
India had earlier defeated Pakistan (4-0), Czech Republic (12-0), Russia (10-2) and Germany (3-2).
Team coach Clarence Lobo described the tournament as a good outing for the players who learnt a lot from the experience.
"It was a good experience for the youngsters. The games against Pakistan and Germany were good.
"The boys learnt to acclimatise to very low tempratures (about 7 degree Celsius) and perform. They also got to know about the body contact tactics adopted by the Europeans," Lobo said.