New Delhi, 1 February 2015: Two teams with two draws, one loss and no win to their credit, met today at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium, New Delhi. It was the defending Champions Delhi Waveriders against the newly formed Dabang Mumbai and both were vying for the 5 full points and to go up the ladder. Delhi Waveriders came out winners, beating the visiting team by 3-1.
Both teams were looking at putting the initial pressure on the opponent team from the word go. It was Delhi Waveriders which got its first penalty corner just 7 minutes into the game but was unlucky to capitalize on the opportunity. The breakthrough finally came in the 10th minute for the host team when Lloyd Norris Jones got a clean long pass at the opponent’s D and he made no mistake in ensuring he hit it cleanly past the Dabang Mumbai goalie. Just minute left into the first quarter Lloyd Norris Jones was in action again at the opponent’s semi circle and he passed the ball to Talwinder Singh standing in front of the goal post but Talwinder could not complete the touch. In the dying seconds of the first quarter, Dabang Mumbai was awarded with a penalty corner and the chance to equalize was denied by the defence of the host team.
With DWR leading 1-0 in the first quarter, the intent was clear by Dabang Mumbai in the second quarter. However, Delhi Waveriders was awarded with a penalty corner in the 19th minute and this time Rupinder ensured that the ball found the nets taking the team to a 2-0 lead. Seconds left to the second quarter, Lloyd Norris Jones again made a desperate attempt to score another one for his team but his back hand flick was wide of the goal leaving the scorecard at 2-0 at the end of first half.
Immediately into the third quarter, Dabang Mumbai won a penalty corner and another opportunity to close the goal gap but the brilliant stop by Timmothy Drummond denied the Dabangs a goal. This did not deter the determination of the visiting team and they continued their attack on Delhi Waveriders. In the 36th minute Arjun Hallapa standing at the D got a pass and ensured that he struck past the Goalkeeper giving his team the much required goal. Realising that they might lose hold of the match, the hosts tried to attack and just minutes left in the third quarter, Delhi’s Talwinder Singh managed another chance to score for his team but again could not capitalise on the opportunity. The third quarter ended with Delhi still leading 2-1.
The fourth quarter saw more action by both the teams. While the hosts wanted to increase the goal gap, Dabang Mumbai was looking at equalizing the scorecard. In the 52nd minute it was seamless passes by Delhi Waveriders which helped Akashdeep to score for his team, taking the score to 3-1. The next minute Dabang Mumbai attacked the defence of Delhi and was awarded with a penalty corner and a chance to reduce the goal margin. But the effort by Dabang Mumbai went in vain as it was yet again saved by the Delhi goalie. Despite Dabang Mumbai’s continuous efforts, they were unable to score and were met by the strong defence of Delhi Waveriders and the match ended with 3-1 and Delhi Waveriders registered its first win in the League.
Speaking post the win an excited Cedric D’souza, Head Coach, Delhi Waveriders said, “We played to our best capabilities today and ensured less mistakes. The focus was on good hockey and not to repeat the mistakes of our last match. So far the boys have played good hockey but because of the mistakes in the past matches we lost the opportunity to finish the games in our favour. The aim from here will be to make winning a habit and this win should further enhance our game in the League.”
Speaking on today’s performance, Valentin Altenburg, Head Coach, Dabang Mumbai said “Our games in both the halves were poor and the performance was not upto the mark. We created a good number of opportunities but failed to convert them into goals. We should have changed the course of the match easily but could not.”
Hero Goal of the Match – Lloyd Norris Jones, Delhi Waveriders
Man of the Match – Lloyd Norris Jones, Delhi Waveriders
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