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India hockey team triumphs at Asian Champions Trophy

The Indian men's hockey team reclaimed the top spot in the ongoing Asian Champions Trophy hockey competition after they defeated Malaysia by 5-0 in their round-robin clash at the Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium in Chennai on Sunday.

Previously, India had drawn 1-1 with Japan on Friday. They had started the campaign at home with a huge 7-2 win over China on Thursday. 
India is at the top spot, with two wins and a draw in three matches and a total of seven points. Malaysia is in the second spot with two wins and a loss in three matches and a total of six points. 

Starting off well, India made inroads into Malaysian defence as quickly as in 2nd minute, but the visitors managed to keep any troubles at bay. 
In the fourth minute, Sukhjeet Singh missed a chance to score, failing to send Vivek Sagar's drive to the net. Ball was wide off the target

In the first quarter, both teams looked to be attacking but could not score a goal. 

Karthi Selvam secured a 1-0 lead for India with a ferocious strike. He got a brilliant pickup from skipper Harmanpreet Singh and sent the ball past the goalkeeper. At the end of Q1, India was in the lead

In the second quarter, both teams could not score a goal and it ended with India being in a 1-0 lead. 

In the third quarter, Hardik Singh (32nd minute) and skipper Harmanpreet (42nd minute) tripled India's lead going into the final quarter. Malaysia also got a goal from a penalty corner but the decision was overturned after India opted to review. 

In the final quarter, India got some penalty corners but they failed to convert. However, a goal from Gurjant Singh (53rd minute) and a drag-flick by Jugraj Singh (54th minute) made the scoreline 5-0 for India. 

Earlier, China put on a superb show of defence as they held the defending champions South Korea to a 1-1 draw in the round-robin match of the ongoing Asian Champions Trophy Hockey tournament on Sunday.

Jonghyun Jang gave Korea an early advantage, but Chongcong Chen scored the equaliser for China at the Mayor Radhakrishnan Hockey Stadium in Chennai. 

In the first quarter of the match, no team was able to enjoy any clear shots at the net. 

China was, however, dominant in ball possession, having as much as 55 per cent ball possession during the first ten minutes. The first quarter ended without a goal being scored. 

In the starting minutes of the second quarter, Korea got the first penalty corner of the match. 

Jang converted the penalty in the 18th minute, giving an advantage to South Korea

The second quarter ended with South Korea leading. China had two opportunities to score, but they could not make the most of it.

The third quarter of the match started. In the 43rd minute, with a goal from Chongcong, China was able to equalise. The third quarter ended with both sides level. 

The final quarter started and both teams failed to make the best of these final 15 minutes to score. Korea tried desperately for a winning goal
in the final few minutes but failed. Korea has played two draws in a row after winning their opener, it sits at second with five points in three matches. China is yet to win a match and has lost two and drawn one. They have just one point and sit at the bottom. 

In the next match, Pakistan and Japan played out a thrilling 3-3 draw. 
In this match, Pakistan took an early advantage in the first quarter during the ninth minute itself, with the help of a strike from Abdul Rana. 

However, the 2022 finalists Japan were not the ones to be ruled out so quickly as just four minutes later, Seren Tanaka responded with a
thundering equaliser. The first quarter ended with both sides level at 1-1. 
The second quarter got underway. Midway through the quarter, Muhammad Khan managed to give back Pakistan their lead through a penalty corner in the 25th minute. 

The second quarter ended with Pakistan leading 2-1. The third quarter started and Japan levelled the scores yet again with the help of a 37th-minute goal from Ryosei Kato. 

In the final seconds of the quarter, Ohashi Masaki converted a penalty corner to give Japan a 3-2 lead. 

In the final quarter, Muhammad Khan converted yet another penalty corner in the 55th minute to level the scores 3-3. The match ended in a draw. 

Both teams have drawn two matches and lost one and have two points each. While Japan is at the fourth spot, Pakistan is in the fifth spot.

(ANI)

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