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2010 WC: Global News
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Rajpal Singh's team loses the practice match 1-4 (2/13/2010)
--K. Arumugam
Indian team loses the practice match 4-1

On a rainy day, Indian team for the World Cup lost it practice match 1-4 much to the glee of Combined Oil Sector team.

Goalie Devesh Chauhan, who conceded five of the six goals on Wednesday in the first practice match, showed his class in denying the World Cup team any leeway at the cage.

According to a Safai Karmchari (please see the footnote on why we quote a safai karmchari), the Indian team was no way in the game, as the team struggled to ward off 0-two–zero lead the domestic team built up at half time.

India got five penalty corners, but all the three stalwarts – Sandeep Singh, Dhananjay Mahadik and Diwakarram – could not do much as 2004 Olympian Harpal, as charger, charged them out. On odd occasions a rebound was waiting to be tapped in, Devesh Chauhan came up with great saves.

“We lost the first practice match badly because we hardly play as combined oil team, and in the last two days we started to jell, and it paid us good result, “ said a Combined Oil Sector team player.

Indian team was panicky in the second half, and in their hurry to score goals they compounded the moves for themselves.

Oil Sector scored a goal early in the second half to take the lead to 3-0. Just when five or six minutes left for the hooter, probably Shivender Singh (not sure of the scorer name though) connected a pass to give his team an elusive goal. However, the Oil Team punched another goal a couple of minutes later to maintain the victory margin of three goals.

Oil team’s penalty corner was scored by a Sardar player (safai Karmachari does not know his name, and you can’t fault him for this).

Deepak Thakur, whom our Safai Karmachari identified very well, was a poor man on the field, showing neither fitness nor alertness. ‘..woh kisi kam ka nahi hai’, was our expert watcher (Safai Karmachari)’s refrain. In fact the other scorers of the winning team were standbye Mandeep Antil and Ravi Pal Singh, who opted out of World Cup probables’ Pune camp.

The result should not send panic waves, as often the national team loses such practice matches, and it has happened innumerable times in the past; even the 1928 Olympic team lost a match to Delhi XI at present day Dassera Grounds.

However, the margin of defeat is a cause for concern.

Footnote: We would always like to quote Chief Coach Jose Brasa or his other coaches, or worthwhile manager. This has been established tradition. But all these worthies are now under the gag order, actual or contrived, we have no other option than to turn to Safai Karamcharis to know what happens.

Manager for the team is yet to be announced, this job is nowadays carried out by Harendra Singh, besides his other responsibilities. Interestingly, no Selectors or Hockey India officials came to watch the match. However, don’t under-estimate Safai Karamcharis, it is because of them today you got this report. They have been great followers of the game, and might have watched more matches than you and I would have. This match took place in Delhi, whence this site operates, and it was a challenge not to miss reporting this. Hope Safaiwallahs are not served a gag order tomorrow!

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Is India coming in "cold"
by prem judge on 2/13/2010 1:11:54 PM
Thanks to Safai Karamchari and S2H for this report. Due to the constant bungling of those in"power" it appears that the Indians will be coming into the tournment "cold", untested and untried. Perhaps this may work in their favour, however a word of warning at least come in 110% switched on and ready to kill even before the whistle is blown as the Pakistanis will be doing just that and I hope that the coaching staff/handlers have learned from the "Kuantan" encounter. Sure the players have loads of experience, still one never stops learning and it would be wise to re-visit and CORRECT past blunders; come in as "one India", posotive calling, encouraging and total concentration for the full duration. Do not let the ceremonials interfer in your warm-ups, and concentration, go India go this is your best chance so prove all critics wrong and do your thing.