In a dazzling second-half show, India whipped arch-rivals Pakistan 4-0 in a round-robin league match of the invitational under-21 Sultan of Johor Cup hockey tournament in Johor Bahru, Malaysia on Wednesday. Sukhmanjit Singh (38th and 46th), Imran Khan (45th) and Ramandeep Singh (61st) scored for India in what turned out to be a totally one-sided contest. The teams were locked 0-0 at half-time.
This was India's third straight win while Pakistan lost their first game in three outings. India and Malaysia are level on points (nine from three wins each) but the hosts are No. 1 in the six-team championship with a better goal-difference. India play Korea while Pakistan and Malaysia lock horns in key games on Thursday. A win against Korea should ensure India a spot in Sunday's final.
"It was a great performance from the players and I am both happy and proud. The players played to instructions, not falling into playing the pace of our opponents in the first half," said Indian team manager Baljit Singh Saini, who coached the team last year.