Goalkeeper PR Sreejesh saved several goals within the stipulated time and saved a penalty stroke in a thrilling penalty shootout as the Indian men's hockey team defeated Olympic champions Belgium in the first match of the FIH Pro League. defeated 5-4.
Indian team made a great comeback after falling behind
The Indian team was trailing 1-3 with only eight minutes of play left but tied the score at 3-3 and dragged the match into a shootout. Sreejesh saved a shot from Alexander Hendricks who had come to take the third penalty. When the shootout was tied at 4-4, Akashdeep scored a goal to make the score 5-4. Sreejesh saved many goals during the match but the two goals saved in the last quarter proved to be very important.
Brilliant performance by Sreejesh, saved two goals
No goal was scored in the first quarter in which Sreejesh saved two shots. At the beginning of the second quarter, Shamsher Singh scored for India in the 18th minute. Belgium equalized three minutes later on Cédric Charlier's goal. In the third quarter, Simon Gonnard gave Belgium the lead in the 36th minute. Sreejesh saved two more shots in the meantime but de Kerpel scored a penalty corner to take the lead 3-1. Manpreet Singh gave India a penalty corner, which Harmanpreet Singh converted into a goal. On the other hand, Jarmanpreet scored the third goal when India used a variation on the penalty corner to dodge Belgium.
Indian women's team lost to Belgium in the first match
The Indian women's hockey team, which easily lost control of the ball, showed a spirited force in the fourth quarter but lost 1-2 to Belgium in the first match of the FIH Pro League on Saturday. India now has to play Belgium in the second match on June 12.