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Army red red-tags MEG (1/15/2011)
--Shashank Gupta
Merciless thrashing for MEG by Army Red

Army red thoroughly thrashed local giant MEG 7-0 at the Ozone Group State Super Division Hockey League, at the KSHA stadium, Bangalore, on Friday.

Mandish, for Army Red, got an early penalty corner in the 7th minute, but his hit went off the target. This followed another one in the 12th minute when Red’s Varun was blocked wrongly by Kiran in the circle. This time, S Armugam, on a variation, scored on a low drag flick, thereby opening the score for Army Red. Thereafter, Red men almost camped in MEG’s half without much botheration to their full backs and the goalkeeper. On the other hand, MEG’s full throttle attacks were only a handful.

One wondered if this was the same MEG team that held Fortis to a 1-1 draw, a day before. As Army men kept making quick moves down the flank, it was in the 15th minute when MEG conceded their 3rd penalty corner. This time honors were done by their captain, Xalco, as the score read 2-0 in their favor.

A couple of penalty corners came Army Red’s way before a brilliant field goal was scored by S Ali in the 31st minute to take the score to 3-0. In the 2nd half, MEG’s defense looked helpless, but their forwards attempted a number of attacks to put in promise into an otherwise one sided game. Muthanna and Subramani gave their hearts out and earned a few penalty corners for the Sappers.

A few blocks by Varun, Rajesh Kumar, S Armugam and good goal-keeping by P T Rao, for Army Red, made sure that MEG couldn’t open their score at all.

On the other side of the pitch, MEG did fairly well to restrict giving off penalty corners to Army Red. Their efforts showed colors as they gave away only 2 compared to 5 in the 1st half. However, Army Red showed a brilliant field game and scored 2 field goals. The one by S Ali, in a crowded circle, by a reverse flick, was a visual treat. The score ended 7-0, with a brace by S Ali, S Armugam, M C Singh and a goal by Xalco. In an earlier match, Indian Oil drubbed the minnows ASC 8-0. (Goals: 2-Raghunath, 3-Inderjit, 1 each by Hamza, Roshan and Gaganjit)

In the last match of the day, BPCL, even with their half-hearted performance, made Army Green look insignificant as they finished the score 4-1, in their favor.

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