Tokyo Olympics 2020: Indian hockey team creates history, beat Great Britain 3-1, men’s hockey team in semi-finals of Olympics after 49 years

The Indian men’s hockey team made a splendid performance and made it to the semi-finals. Team India defeated Great Britain 3-1 in the quarter-finals played on Sunday. The hero of the victory was Indian goalkeeper PR Sreejesh, who made four excellent defenses. For India, Dilpreet Singh scored in the 7th minute, Gurjant Singh in the 16th and Hardik Singh scored in the 57th minute. At the same time, Sam Ward scored the only goal for Great Britain in the 45th minute of the game. Now India will face World Champion Belgium in the semi-finals on Tuesday.

India reached the semi-finals in the Olympics after 49 years. Earlier in the Montreal Olympics (1972), the Indian team reached the semi-finals. Although the Indian team won the gold medal in the 1980 Moscow Olympics. But during that time, India had secured the final ticket by staying second in the pool of six teams.

The Indian team was completely dominated in the first quarter. Great Britain got a penalty corner in the third minute, which was thwarted by the Indian defenders. After this, Dilpreet opened India’s account by scoring a goal on Simranjit Singh’s pass in the 7th minute. Then in the first minute of the second quarter, Gurjant Singh scored a field goal to put India 2-0 ahead. However, after this India could not score in this quarter and remained the same score till half time.

Great Britain tried to make a comeback in the third quarter. Finally, in the 45th minute of the game, Sam Ward converted a penalty corner to open Great Britain’s account. Great Britain got penalty corners in the fourth and last quarter as well, but the Indian goalkeeper and defenders performed brilliantly to eliminate the possibility of a goal. Then in the 57th minute of the game, Hardik Singh scored a brilliant field goal to give India a decisive 3-1 lead.

India’s last medal at the Olympics was in 1980 in Moscow, when the team won the yellow medal under the captaincy of Vasudevan Bhaskaran. Since then, the Indian hockey team’s performance declined steadily and could not do better after finishing fifth in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. But now after 41 years, the Indian team has a great chance of winning a medal.

In Group A, India was placed along with defending champions Argentina, Australia, Japan, New Zealand and Spain. Whereas in Group-B there were teams from Belgium, Canada, Germany, Britain, Netherlands and South Africa. All the teams played each other and the top four teams from both the groups advanced to the semi-finals. India reached the quarter-finals by finishing second in their group with four wins and one loss.

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