Asian Games 2018: India beat arch-rivals Pakistan to clinch bronze
After their dominating run was brought to a halt at the hands of Malaysia, the Indian men’s hockey team ended their Asian Games campaign on a high after they defeated arch-rivals Pakistan 2-1 in the bronze medal match on Saturday.
It took as early as the third minute for Harendra Singh’s men to get off the mark after Akashdeep Singh netted the ball into the roof of the net. Having secured a lead, the Indian team failed to capitalise on it as no team could find a goal in the next two quarters. It was only in the final quarter that Harmanpreet Singh, through a penalty corner in the 50th minute, slotted one in from a powerful drag-flick to double the lead. Although Muhammad Mohammad Atiq scored for Pakistan in the next few minutes, it wasn’t enough for the men in green to win as Harendra Singh and his team walked away with the bronze medals.
Nonetheless, this medal would calm the nerves a bit in the Indian camp after the defending champions-initially considered the favourites for the gold once again had come out all guns blazing in the tournament and pumped in a record number of 76 goals in the group stages. But the loss to Malaysia in the sudden death, in the semi-final match, have hampered their confidence big time-something which was evident during the match against Pakistan. But fortunately, they used all their chances well and in the end, emerged with the win.