Odisha Hockey WC: India Outplay SA 5-2 To Finish 9th, 3 Places Below 2018 Edition

Rourkela: India ended their World Cup Hockey 2023 campaign with a dominant 5-2 win over South Africa to finish ninth.

Having begun their quest to end a 48-year wait for a World Cup medal encouragingly at Birsa Munda International Stadium here a fortnight ago, the men in blue disappointed fans by failing to reach the quarterfinals. But Graham Reid’s men made sure they didn’t slip any further with big wins in classification matches.

In the 2018 World Cup, also hosted by Odisha, India had lost to The Netherlands in the quarterfinal and ended sixth.

On Saturday, India went on the offensive from the world go and took the lead through an Abhishek field goal after 4 minutes.

Skipper Harmanpreet Singh doubled the lead in the 12th minute, converting the team’s first penalty corner. India went on to squander the other five penalty corners, but continued to find field goals thanks to their relentless domination and pressing.

Shamsher Singh, Akashdeep Singh and Sukhjeet Singh swelled the tally, while South Africa pulled back 2 goals in the final quarter.

Earlier today, Argentina routed Wales 6-0 in another classification contest.

Germany face defending champions Belgium in the final on Sunday, after Australia clash with The Netherlands for third place.

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