JAKARTA: Attacking moves brought rewards for dominant Pakistan as they thrashed hosts Indonesia 13-0 in their second pool match of the Asia Hockey Cup 2022 at the GBK Sports Arena, Jakarta on Tuesday.
Pakistan got off to a flying start, scoring four goals in the first quarter to put Indonesia under pressure, who earlier on Tuesday conceded a 9-0 defeat against Japan in their opening match. Pakistan in their inaugural fixture had held defending champions India to a 1-1 draw.
For Pakistan, Rizwan Ali put up a splendid show, scoring thrice, in the 15th, 25th and 43rd minutes while Ajaz Ahmad (2’, 49’) and Abdul Rana (4’, 17’) were also standout performers. Mubashir Ali (16’), Ali Shan (19’), Ali Ghazanfar (35’), and Moin Shakeel (45’) netted a goal apiece in Pakistan’s huge win.
Pakistan skipper Umar Bhutta said the win against Indonesia had boosted teams confidence.
“Yesterday’s match [against India] was good and we had the chances to win but could not convert them into goals,” he said.
“We are here with a young side and drew against India, now, the big win against Indonesia is a morale booster for them.”
Umar said Pakistan were eying a podium finish in the Asia Cup to earn a spot in the World Cup in India.
“Indonesia is a lower-ranked team, and we tried our best to score as many goals as we could against them to better our position,” added Umar.
Pakistan were second in the Pool ‘A’ standings after the match while Japan were top after their 5-2 drubbing of India in Tuesday’s second match.
The Japanese were in control right from the first quarter but the score remained 0-0 until Ken Nagayoshi gave Japan the lead in the 23rd minute. The lead was doubled in the 39th, thanks to Kose Kawabe’s strike.
Pawan Rajbhar’s reponse minutes later gave India hope of a comeback, only to see Japan hit three more in the final quarter before India converted one consolation goal.
On Thursday, India, who are third in the pool standings will play Indonesia, while Pakistan take on Japan.
Published in Dawn, May 25th, 2022