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Wizards Vs Rhinos while Magicians meet Warriors (1/20/2013)
--s2h team
Wizards face Rhinos and Magicians meet Warriors on Day Six

It will be a busy Sunday for the Hockey fans, with two games lined up for tomorrow in the Hero Hockey India League: Ranchi Rhinos face Uttar Pradesh Wizards at Lucknow while Mumbai Magicians clash with Jaypee Punjab Warriors at home in Mumbai.

The schedule tomorrow is interesting in a sense that two unbeaten teams – the Rhinos and Uttar Pradesh Wizards – will encounter each other. On the other hand, Punjab and Mumbai teams, who have lost all their matches till now, will contest to retrieve some salvage from the other. undefined

For the Sahara owned Wizards, Rhinos are expected to pose a huge threat as they have showcased elegant attacking prowess in the competition so far. Rhinos have dominated in both of their earlier encounters and the way they toyed with the Mumbai defense in the first half on Friday can send shivers down any team’s spine. Their ability to control the midfield and a solid defence can pose a huge problem for the Wizards in the game tomorrow.

To further compound the problems of the Wizards, their penalty corner conversion rate is fairly poor, and increasingly getting poorer. Their ‘costly’ captain, VR Raghunath, who is also their drag-flick expert, would have to come up with something special on Sunday. So, for Wizards, to say the least, it will not be easy to block Rhinos’ rampage.

In this evening game, Mumbai Magicians would play for the first time at home. Their rivals, Punjab Warriors, have had a horrendous start to their campaign, losing all the three games in trot. Magicians’ start to the event hasn’t been any better, losing both their games so far, including the loss to Ranchi Rhinos on Friday evening.

For both the teams, Sunday’s game is as much a challenge mentally, as it is physically. Keeping their morale high despite having suffered a poor start is something that both the team managements would be trying to do. Mumbai Magicians were outplayed by a spirited Ranchi Rhinos team on Friday evening, and Magicians would need to recover quickly from that loss.

Magicians would have learned their lessons from that loss, and would be keen to be a lot more proactive against Warriors on Sunday. They would be hoping to ride on a strong home fans support, which can really lift spirits in such important games.

The challenge for Warriors is not easy either. They have conceded at least two goals in each of their three games so far, and the defence would be under pressure to perform. undefined

Undaunted Jaypee Punjab Warriors’ Coach Barry Dancer said: “It was very unfortunate that we lost the previous matches. The big difference between winning and losing was the conversion rate. It has been less than the opposition team. This is one major thing that we as a team are focusing on. For every team, understanding the combinations, the strengths and weaknesses will take time but I am very confident that this team will play good hockey throughout the tournament”.

“I am not happy with the last two matches, but we as a team are only looking at trying our best to play well. At the end we can only control how we play and focus on our strengths while playing our opponents”. Stated Jamie Dwyer, Captain Jaypee Punjab Warriors

Sunday Game - 20th January: Mumbai Magicians vs Jaypee Punjab Warriors at the Mumbai Hockey Association Stadium at 8 p.m.

Sunday Game - 20th January: Uttar Pradesh Wizards vs Ranchi Rhinos at the Guru Gobind Singh Sports College at 3 p.m.

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