Antwerp: Goalkeeper PR Sreejesh saved a penalty stroke in an exhilarating shoot out after making some breathtaking saves in regulation time because the Indian males’s crew shocked Olympic champions Belgium 5-4 within the first match of the two-legged FIH Professional Hockey League right here on Saturday.
The Indian crew was down 1-3 with simply eight minutes left within the match however made it 3-3 to power a penalty shoot out.
Sreejesh foiled an try from Nicolas de Kerpel when the shoot out was locked 4-4 and Akashdeep Singh discovered the web to make it 5-4 for the Tokyo Video games bronze medallists.
Sreejesh, as typical, was sensible below the bar, foiling plenty of makes an attempt from the hosts all through the match however his two saves within the ultimate quarter proved to be essential.
The eventful first quarter led to a goalless stalemate with Sreehesh doing a improbable job below the bar, making two saves.
It was India who had the primary alternative to open the scoring however each the quick corners went abegging as the house goalie foiled these makes an attempt along with his rock stable defence.
Akashdeep too fluffed a shot close to the goalpost which on every other day he would have flicked contained in the publish.
Nevertheless, early within the second quarter, India discovered the web when Abhishek’s shot rebounded off the custodian’s leg and Shamsher Singh (18′) tapped the excessive ball into the web after it got here off the publish.
Belgium discovered the equaliser by Cedric Charlier (21′), who deflected a move from Nicolas de Kerpel in lightening fast time. It was Arthur van Doren, who pushed it in the direction of Kerpel from the left flank.
Each the groups obtained a penalty nook every however didn’t utilise.
The hosts broke the impasse within the third quarter with Simon Gougnard (36′) slotting a fierce hit house after being fed by Florent van Aubel, who managed the excessive ball properly to push it in the direction of his teammate.
Sreejesh saved India from extra ignominy when he made two heroic saves, parrying the ball away along with his stick, stretched absolutely on his proper.
De Kerpel, although, lastly breached the defence with a livid hit off a penalty nook to make it 3-1.
India got a lifeline within the match when Manpreet Singh gained a penalty which Harmanpreet transformed and two minutes from the hooter, Jarmanpreet Singh discovered the equaliser by a brief nook.
India opted for a variation as Jugraj let it slip in the direction of Jarmanpreet from behind his again after faking a stroke, and the latter blasted that into the web.