Dilpreet Singh was the lone goal scorer in India’s worst ever defeat at the Olympics in their second pool A match at Tokyo.
World number 1 Australia displayed formidable form to crush India 7-1 at the Oi Hockey Stadium in Tokyo on Sunday.
In another pool B game, European champions The Netherlands earned a hard fought 5-3 win against South Africa after conceding three goals in the first twenty minutes.
The 7-1 win is the second in as many days for the Kookaburras and clearly signalled their gold medal intentions. The Manpreet Singh led Indian team had beaten New Zealand 3-2 in their first pool game.
Tim Brand and Thomas Sharp made ambitious forays into the striking circle early in the first quarter. However, it in the 10th minute that they scored the first goal when Jake Whetton took a powerful flick and James Beale put his stick in the way to deflect the ball past India’s defence. Though India created two penalty corners in the 8th and the 15th minute, neither were converted – thanks to some brilliant defence by Flynn Olgivie and keeper Andrew Charter. Dilpreet too made a brave foray into the circle in the 13th minute but didn’t have enough support to finish the task as the Kookaburras were 1-0 up at the first break.
Olympic debutant Jeremy Hayward then converted the second of two penalty corner attempts with a lethal drag flick in the opening minutes of the second quarter. India’s defence was found wanting as Australia pumped two more goals by Flynn Ogilvie and Joshua Beltz to stretch their lead to a formidable 4-0 at Half Time.
Although India came back strongly after the 10 minute break, poor trapping and execution saw them waste the two penalty corners they secured in the 32nd and 33rd minutes.
India scored their only goal in the 34th minute when Rupinder Pal Singh’s low hard shot was nicely deflected by Dilpreet Singh to beat to beat Australian goalkeeper Andrew Charter.
Two goals in two minutes for Blake Govers, one from a penalty stroke and the other from a penalty corner, effectively put the match beyong India’s reach taking Australia’s lead to an unstoppable 6-1.
To make matters worse, Tim Brand scored Australia’s seventh goal in the 51st minute when he received a long pass to dribble past Indian keeper Sreejesh and then defender Birendra Lakra to make it a thumping win for the Kookaburras.