Perth, Nov 9:
The Indian men’s hockey team delivered a fantastic performance to defeat World Champions Australia 3-1 to win their third successive match and clinch the four-match Test series 3-1 at the Perth Hockey Stadium here Sunday.
Upbeat about their last two triumphs against the World No.1 side, who have fielded an experimental team, India opened the first quarter with all strength and dynamism, as a result of which the initial goal came in the 13th minute from the stick of Akashdeep Singh, who perfectly converted a penalty corner.
A couple of penalty corners were awarded to both teams in the second quarter but no one succeeded in materialising the opportunity. When the whistle blew for half-time, the scoreboard displayed 1-0 in favour of the visitors.
However, Australia made a comeback in the third quarter as Thomas Craig converted a penalty corner (36th minute) to level the scores 1-1.
The game strengthened after the equaliser as both teams looked for creating chances. In the final quarter, it was Akashdeep again who scored a stunning field goal (50th). In no time S.K. Uthappa faultlessly scored another field goal (53rd) to put India 3-1 ahead.
In the dying minutes, Australia tried desperately to put the ball in the net but Indian goalkeeper P.R. Sreejesh’s brilliant saves held them from scoring.
India will next play in the FIH Champions Trophy when they take on reigning Olympic champions Germany in their first match at Bhubaneswar. The tournament will be played Dec 6-14.