England beat India 3-2

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/h/hockeygen.jpg' class='caption'> India went down 2-3 to a lowly England in a crucial pool B encounter of World Cup on Thursday.

Updated: February 25, 2007 11:36 IST
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India's lost to England 2-3 in their second pool B outing in the men's hockey World Cup on Thursday. The Indians squandered a 1-0 lead for their second defeat in the high profile tournament. This has virtually ruled the Indian side out of contention for a semi-final berth. The 11th-ranked England blew two penalty strokes in the first-half before James Tindall (54th) and Simon Mantell (57th, 61st) put home penalty corners to give their side an unbeatable lead. The first chance for the Indians came in the 13th minute. Keeper James Fair did a fine double-save, though he did concede a penalty corner. The absence of Sandeep Singh hurt India as Arjun Halappa's weak drag-flick was saved by Fair. A comedy of errors followed in the 24th minute. First, a shocking concession of possession by India, and then a mistake by skipper Dilip Tirkey, which led to a penalty stroke. Too late for India But it didn't cost them anything as Bharat Chhetri saved a weak effort from rival skipper Ben Hawes. Shivendra Singh gave India a 1-0 lead with a 29th minute strike and five minutes from close, skipper Dilip Tirkey found the boards from a penalty corner. The Indians were distinctly lucky to survive the penalty strokes in the first-half during which England messed up the chances that came their way. In the second half, England piled on the agony with Simon Mantell scoring twice from penalty corners, as the Indian defence looked all at sea. With less than five minutes left, Dilip Tirkey pulled one back for India, but it was too late as India lost a second successive match by three goals to two. India next plays Korea on Saturday. (With PTI inputs)

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