Victories for Faisalabad, Quetta, Islamabad in 5-A side hockey
LAHORE—Faisalabad Falcon routed Karachi Sharks 5-3, Quetta Warriors thrashed Peshawar Panthers 9-5 and Islamabad Fighters scored a narrow 7-6 win over Lahore Lions in the OGDCL, PHF 5-A side Hockey championship here on Sunday night under lights at National hockey stadium.
The first half between Faisalabad and Karachi was evenly contested as both the side raided each other area with lively moves but failed to score. It was Faisalabad which shot into lead through Tazeemul Hasan. Second period saw faster pace with both sides creating more scoring sitters. Mohsin Sabir made it 2-0 for Faisalabad but Karachi fought back gallantly. Despite Zeeshan misfiring a penalty stroke, both the goals were neutralized. First Sikander availed a good pass from Qamar Bukhari and soon Zeeshan made amends by scoring Karachi’s second goal. However, before the hooter sounded for the end of the second period, Faislabad’s captain Dilber again restored the lead.
Karachi went all out to hunt the equalizer and Hasan positioned himself well and with an angular shot made it 3-3. Now, Faisalabad spurred into action. Adnan put them ahead again with a superb reverse hit and their captain Dilber confidently scored off a 1 vs 1 Challenge to make it 5-3 till the final whistle.
In the second match Quetta were quickly off the blocks. Rizwan Jr scored with a well- placed hit. The lead was doubled by Kashif Javed’s long range shot. Jolted by two goals, Peshawar responded through Adeel Latif who found the target through a forceful hit. Hasan Ali Faraz’s long range effort made it 3-1 for Quetta. Once again, it was Adeel Latif who reduced the margin. Quetta exerted more pressure and earned a 1 vs 1 Challenge which was converted into goal by Rizwan. Quetta led 4-2 at the end of first half.
The flurry of goals continued in the second period. Quetta’s Rizwan completed his hat trick by tapping a cross from left. Khairullah made it 35 for Peshawar. In a spell of three minutes Quetta dominated and scored three goals through Asfanyar, captain Kashif Ali and Rizwan (his foruth goal) and led 8-3. Now, Peshawar had a mountain to climb. They did pull one back via a 1 vs 1 Challenge goal by Samiullah before the second period concluded.
In the initial phase of the third and last period, Ali Hasan Faraz’s goal made it 9-5.
In the third match Islamabad put up superb show against Lahore which having the services of few senior and junior internationals failed to impress. Islamabad were well in control most of the time and built 3-0 lead with goals coming from Ejaz, Rashid and Wasim Akram. Lahore were also missing the services of their captain Ammad Butt who was out due to a injury. Wasim Akram made it 4-0 from Islamabad . Lahore broke the dead lock when Rana Sohail scored off a 1 vs 1 with a beautiful high flick before the end of the second period. The contest came to life through a Bilal Mahmood brace. First he scored off a 1 vs 1 challenge with a well-placed flat push and then made it 3-4 through a reverse hit.
Islamabad Warriors’ recovered quickly and restored the two goal cushion. Wasim Akram’s shot was well blocked by Lahore custodian Muneeb but Rizwan Sr capitalized on the rebound. Then onwards, a fierce contest developed with goals galore: Lahore reducing the margin to bare minimum and Islamabad doubling the lead. It continued and when the match finally ended, it was 7-6 for Islamabad. Man of Match Rana Sohail scored a hat trick for Lahore.—APP
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