India pound England 9-0, to play for 9th place

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Skipper Diwakar Ram scored a hat-trick as India pounded England 9-0 today to set up a clash with Poland for the ninth position.

Updated: June 17, 2009 12:46 IST
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Skipper Diwakar Ram scored a hat-trick as India pounded England 9-0 today to set up a clash with Poland for the ninth position in the Junior World Cup hockey tournament here.

In a completely lop-sided match at the Seng Kang Sports Complex, India led 5-0 at half time before returning to pump in four more goals.

For them, skipper Diwakar scored thrice (23rd, 48th, 67th minutes) and Danish Mujtaba twice (1st and 20th) while Jay Karan (7th), Victo Singh (32nd), Mandeep Antil (52nd) and Innocent Kullu (63rd min) found the target once each.

India, who had beaten Poland 4-2 in an earlier first round pool match, will face the same opponents again on Saturday.

The Indian colts took the lead in the opening minute as central mid-fielder Vikas Sharma set up Jay Karan on the left flank. The nippy winger dodged past full back Simon Faulkner to set up Danish Mujtaba who beat goalkeeper James Bailey.

India's second goal came six minutes later as left mid-fielder Manjeet Kullu sent a crisp pass into the circle for Jay to deftly push home a reverse.

Buoyed by the early goals, India intensified attack, outplaying England comprehensively with their swift off-the-ball running, short pass and the quick position interchange among the forwards.

And whenever England mounted attacks, it died on the Indian defence. Indian custodian Mrinal Choubey did a good job under the bar, thwarting four penalty corners.

Danish increased the Indian tally in the 20th minute with a faint tickle from a Diwakar push and three minutes later the captain scored the fourth goal from a penalty stroke after Antil was deliberately fouled by Bailey.

Victo Singh continued the rampage for India scoring the fifth goal in the 32nd minute connecting a backhander from Pramod Kumar's set up.

Diwakar flicked a penalty corner upon resumption in the second session to put India six up in the 48th min and four minutes later Antil sounded the board after shaking off his markers.

The rampaging Indians found the target twice more from their fourth and fifth penalty corners in the 63rd and 67th minutes with Innocent Kullu and Diwakar respectively driving them in.

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