Asian Games 2018: India rout Sri Lanka 20-0 to top Pool A, will face Malaysia in semis
India continued with its goal-scoring spree at the 18th Asian Games plundering 20 against a hapless Sri Lanka in the men’s hockey group stage encounter in Jakarta on Tuesday.
The victory meant India has now gone five successive matches unbeaten at the Asiad winning all of them to top Pool A. They have scored a record 76 goals while conceding only three – all of which came against South Korea – in those five-matches and will take on Malaysia in the first semi-final on Thursday. Malaysia finished second in Pool B.
Akashdeep Singh (9th, 11th, 17th, 22nd, 32nd, 42nd) scored a double hat-trick, while playing his 200th match in the Indian jersey Rupinder Pal Singh (1st, 52, 53rd), Harmanpreet Singh (5th, 21st, 33rd) and Mandeep Singh (35th, 43rd, 59th) netted three each. Lalit Upadhyay (57th, 58th), Vivek Sagar Prasad (31st), Amit Rohidas (38th) and Dilpreet Singh (53rd) scored the other goals to round-off a comfortable victory.
Facing the 38th ranked Island nation, World No.5 India got off to flying start going three goals ahead inside the first 10 minutes. Such was their dominance and control over the game that not only did the Lankans failed to score a goal, they failed to even muster a shot on target.
The defending champions on the other had 46 shots and the found the net 20 times. They scored 12 field goals and netted another seven from penalty corners, while the remaining one came from a penalty stroke.
India had earlier routed hosts Indonesia (17-0) and Hong Kong (26-0) before defeating Japan (8-0) and South Korea (5-3) in the first four matches.
Meanwhile, in the women’s category, last edition’s (2014) bronze medallist India will take on silver medal winners China in the semi-finals, while the defending champions Korea will square off against Japan.
All of the semi-finalists are assured at least a bronze medal.