Hockey: India look to bounce back against Spain in Olympics
Thoroughly outplayed by Australia, the Indian men's hockey team would be desperate to rebuild shattered morale when it takes on a lower-ranked Spain in its third Pool A match of the Olympics on Tuesday. After a 3-2 win over New Zealand, the Indians were completely steam-rolled 1-7 by Australia in their second game. The debacle exposed every possible chink in India's armor.
How Australia overpowered Indian team in the game?
The mighty Kookaburras simply toyed with the Indian defense after the first quarter and scored goals at will to comfortably secure their second consecutive win in the competition. The fragile Indian defense was put under relentless pressure by the Kookaburras from the onset and in doing so, they succeeded in creating spaces in the mid-field which resulted in as many as seven goals.
Australia is heading the pool with two wins
Going by the points table, India is currently placed fourth just below New Zealand on goal difference. The pool is headed by Australia with two wins out of as many matches, followed by reigning Olympic champions Argentina with four points. Spain and Japan are yet to register a win. The top four teams from a pool of six each will qualify for the quarterfinals.
India failed to convert even one of six penalty corners
The Indians looked nowhere close to their best against Australia on Sunday as they failed to make even one of the six penalty corners count in the match despite having three world-class drag-flickers in Harmanpreet Singh, Rupinder Pal Singh, and Amit Rohidas in their ranks. The forward-line led by Mandeep Singh, Shamsher Singh, Lalit Upadhayay, and Dilpreet too looked off-color.
Spain would look to register their first win
India captain Manpreet Singh said, "They erred in man-to-man marking against Australia, an area which they need to address. We missed chances at the start and that makes a difference when it happens against top sides." Spain, on the other hand, would look to register their first win in the tournament, having drawn 1-1 against Argentina before losing 3-4 to New Zealand on Sunday.