PC: Hockey India (Lucknow): Hockey Punjab were crowned champions of Hockey India Senior Men National Championship 2018 after they came from a goal down to defeat Petroleum Sports Promotion Board(PSPB) 2-1 in a well-fought encounter here in Padma Shri Mohammad Shahid Synthetic Hockey Stadium.
Petroleum Sports Promotion Board had taken an early lead in the match as penalty corner specialist Gurjinder Singh towed a powerful flick past the net. However, veteran Gurbaj Singh led Hockey Punjab made a comeback in the last seven minutes of the match, when Sarvanjit Singh scored two goals in the 53rd and 60th minute of the game.
In the Bronze medal match, it was defending champions Railway Sports Promotion Board (RSPB) who defeated Air India Sports Promotion Board 5-3 on penalties after the scores were tied at 1-1 after regulation time.
RSPB had taken an early lead in the match in the fifth minute courtesy of Sayyad Niyaz Rahim’s field goal to put his team in the lead upfront. However, Air India showed character to fight back and scored the equaliser in the 17th minute through India’s former forward Shivendra Singh.
Both the teams made the best use of their resources to score a winner through quick and counter attacking hockey but none succeeded in doing so, which meant that the match is going to penalty shootout.
In the shootout, RSPB kept their nerve as they scored from all five of their shots while Air India missed their second shot which saw them lose 3-5.
Champions of Hockey India Senior Men National Championship 2018: Hockey Punjab