Lucknow: Host India beat Spain 2-1 to move into the semi-finals of the 11th Junior Hockey World Cup at the Major Dhyan Chand Stadium here on Thursday.
India started dominating Spain right from the outset as they won couple of penalty corners within the first 10 minutes itself. However, similar to previous games India failed to convert them. Despite having most of the chances, it was Spain who took the lead in the 22nd minute, when Marc Serrahima struck from the penalty corner. The European side was leading 1-0 at half time.
After enjoying the majority of the possession, Spain maintained their solitary goal lead till the 57th minute, courtesy some brilliant saves by their goalie Albert Perez. Just when it looked that the match was slipping away from India’s grasp, Simranjeet Singh slotted in a penalty corner much to the relief of the home team and its supporters. Harmanpreet Singh put India ahead, as he converted a penalty corner in the 66th minute. The hosts maintained their lead despite Spain opting to go to with 11 outfield players in the last couple of minutes.
India will now play Australia in the second semi-finals on Friday, while defending champions Germany will play take on Belgium in the first semi-final.
Day 8 Results:
Quarter-final 1 – Belgium 1 (4) beat Argentina 1 (1)
Quarter-final 2 – Germany 4 (Jan Schiffer 22′ Lukas Windfeder 27′, Florian Scholten 52′, Timm Herzbruch 70′) beat England 2 (Ed Horler 65′, 66′)
Quarter-final 3 – Australia 2 beat Netherlands 1
Group D – India – 4 (Simranjeet Singh 57′, Harmanpreet Singh 66′) beat Spain – 1 (Marc Serrahima 22′)
15th/16th Place – Egypt vs Canada at 11:15 AM
13th/14th Place – Japan vs South Korea at 01:30 PM
Semi-Final 1 – Belgium vs Germany at 03:45 PM
Semi-Final 2 – Australia vs India at 06:00 PM