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Friday December 03, 2021

MPCL stun powerful Army in National Hockey

November 09, 2020

RAWALPINDI: Mari Petroleum Company Limited (MPCL) edged out powerful Army 2-1 in an important 66th National Hockey Championship match at the MPCL Stadium in Rawalpindi Sunday.

As the action restarted following a day’s rest Saturday, all the new entrants wanted was a victory against Army to keep their chances of making it to the last four stage alive and they achieved the target with utmost success.

Following a close early fight between the two sides, Umair Sattar banged home MPCL’s opener on the first penalty corner they received in the 8th minute for a 1-0 lead. Army did retaliate well making all-out efforts to strike an equalizer. Mohammad Afzal failed on one occasion and so did Mohammad Safeer.

Following the first two quarters, MPCL succeeded in holding on to their lead.

Umair again found himself in the right position to score his and MPCL’s second through well executed move. The 2-0 lead at the outset of the third quarter pumped up Army efforts to get on the board and they finally did with a penalty corner goal in the 38th minute from Mohammad Arsalan to reduce the margin to 2-1. Though both teams got one more penalty corner each and numerous opportunities, the scoreline remained the same till the final hooter.

Earlier, Ahmad Nadeem performed a hat-trick as Sui Southern Gas Corporation (SSGC) overwhelmed Police 9-0 in a one-sided outing. All three of his goals came from a field effort.

Mubashir Ali and Ali Shan netted two goals each with Zeeshan Khan and Mohammad Rizwan completing the tally for SSGC. The winners kept on the pressure and succeeded in scoring regularly throughout four quarters.

National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) also made it three from three with a less convincing 2-1 win over Punjab.

In fact, Punjab were the one that broke the ice, netting their only goal through Hanan Shahid in the 13th minute. NBP equalised through Kashif in the 18th minute with Abu Bakar scoring the winner in the 34th minute. There was no addition of any goal from thereon.

Wapda struck six past Port Qasim without a reply in day’s third match with Aleem Bilal scoring a hat-trick.

Two of his goals came on penalty corners while the third was a penalty stroke goal. Amjad Ali, Rana Waheed and Sohail Anjum banged home one each field goal to see Wapda picking up yet another impressive win.

Navy blanked PAF 3-0 in the last match of the day with goals coming from Babar Hussain, Hammad Ali and Noman Janjua. Navy scored all their goals in the first three quarters. PAF always fought a losing battle against Navy team that looked solid, having good defence to deter PAF forwards’ attacks.