Sunday, May 6, 2012


India and Pakistan played to a 2-2 draw in the 7th Junior Asia Cup, handing the advantage to Pakistan who only need to defeat Sri Lanka while India has a tougher match against China which they cannot afford to lose.

While Pakistan held off China for a 1-0 win in their opening match, India romped to a 11-0 win over hapless Sri Lanka.

In the opening five minutes it was all Pakistan as they moved the ball all around the pitch with relative ease as the Indian players moved to pack their defence.

In the 5th minute skipper Muhammad Umar Bhutta found Muhammad Dibler with a delightful through pass and although the angle was acute, Dilber hit a reverse that beat Indian custodian Sushant Tirkey at the near post to give Pakistan a 1-0 lead.

India could have drawn level in the 10th minute but Malak Singh normally so deadly in the semi circle missed a sitter from three feet from the Pakistan goal.

With Umar Bhutta pulling the strings and combing well with Dilber, India had to back pedal with Dilber coming close twice, first in the 21st minute when his reverse hit the sideboards.

And two minutes later Dilber was denied by Tirkey in the Indian goal who came rushing out to pull off a fine save.

India were awarded a penalty corner in the 25th minute and Amit Rohidass made no mistake to sent the ball sailing into the net to put India on level terms.

Though Sukhdev Singh had the ball in the net in the 31st minute, after a rebound off a penalty corner flick by Amit, umpire Mike Gerwig of Germany disallowed the goal as the ball had hit Sukhdev on the foot.

Two minutes later it was Akashdeep Singh who wasted another goal scoring opportunity as his reverse stick hit from the top off the semi circle went wide of the post with Pakistan keeper Mazhar Abbas diving full stretch.

At halftime it was tied 1-1 with everything to play for.

Pakistan took the lead in the 39th minute when Dilber sent a reverse hit across the face of the Indian goal where a lurking Muhammad Irfan had the simplest of task to tap the ball into goal to give Pakistan a 2-1 lead.

India had the ball in the goal via Garmail Singh in the 42nd minute but was disallowed due to an infringement.

But India was not to be denied as Akashdeep scored in the 61st minute, the ball slipping in between the legs of Mazhar.

And it ended all square with Sri Lanka and china holding the key as to who will top the group.