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Friday, Dec 09, 2022
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Premier Hockey League

Sultans Reign Supreme

Riding Inderjeet Chadda's decisive strike, the home team pip Jalandhar 2-1 to pocket Rs 30 lakhs and the inaugural title. More Coverage

Sultans Reign Supreme
Sultans Reign Supreme
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

Inderjeet Singh Chadda netted a brilliant winner in the fourth quarter as hosts Hyderabad Sultans defeated Sher-e-Jalandhar 2-1 in their final league match to win the inaugural Premier Hockey League.

For the Sultans Sameer Dad (20th) and Chadda (65th) found the mark while Deepak Thakur (49th) scored for Sher-e-Jalandhar.

The winners, who finished with 19 points to emerge champions, took home a prize money of Rs 30 lakh and the runners-up Rs 10 lakh as the inaugural edition of the event concluded at the Gachibowli.

The Sultans were followed in the points table by Sher-e-Jalandhar (14), Maratha Warriors (13), Bangalore Hi Fliers (9) and Chennai Veerans (5).

The Sultans surged ahead into the lead after a barren first quarter when a move from the right was taken by Wasim Ahmed who put the ball in Dad's possession.

Dad dodged past two players including Baljit Singh Dhillon before driving home to draw the first blood.

Jalandhar tried hard for the equaliser, which came when Thakur, after getting a cross from Didar Singh, tapped the ball in.

With the score level 1-1 and the match entering into the last quarter, it appeared as if the fate would be decided in extra-time. But Chaddha had other plans as with just five minutes to go he slammed one past the Jalandhar goalkeeper to seal the issue in favour of his side.

Hyderabad skipper Dilip Tirkey was injured in the first quarter and was out for the rest of the match. But his absence did not hurt the hosts much since former Pakistan captain Wasim Ahmed displayed good stick work and was brilliant in the first half..

The hosts built up some very good moves in the initial stages and they attacked in waves with Chaddha and Dad leading from the front and Ajitesh Rai providing adequate support from the mid-field.

But the raids could yield nothing positive in the face of some very good work by the Jalandhar deep defenders.

After the Sultans took the lead, Jalandhar stepped up their attack and pace and the hosts survived a scare when Prabhjot Singh tried his reverse hit but Vikaram Pillay dived brilliantly to intercept the ball before custodian Ahmed Alam averted any further damage.

Jalandhar missed out on a good chance when Prabhjot took a through ball into the circle but Thakur failed to connect.

In the third quarter, short corner specialist Sohail Abbas failed to convert a penalty corner, much to the disappointment of the home crowd that cheered for the Sultans throughout the match.

Sohail, however, ended as the second highest goal scorer of the competition with seven goals, one less than Len Aiyappa of the Bangalore Hi Fliers.

PTI

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