Ranchi Rays defeated Dabang Mumbai to climb upto third position while Mumbai stayed on top of the six-team league table.
Ranchi Rays faced table-toppers Dabang Mumbai in a jam-packed Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium, Ranchi in the Coal India Hockey India League. The decorated tournament features the best players of the hockey world and has tweaked rules to bring more flair and excitement to the game.
Playing in front of vocal crowd, the home team started badly and conceded in the second minute of game. Dabang Mumbai skipper Florian Fuchs scored the first field goal of the match in the second minute. As per the rules of the tournament, every field goal results in two goals and every penalty corner goal results in one goal. Dabang Mumbai thus lead the game 2-0 right in the beginning of the game. Ranchi Rays skipper Ashley Jackson equalised for the Rays in the fifth minute through a field goal.
The home side Ranchi Rays started the second quarter with greater confidence. Australian Flynn Ogilvie received the ball at the centre-line and dribbled through the Mumbai defence. His shot on the goal was deflected and fell to Mohd Amir, who shot it past the goalkeeper to make it 4-2 for Ranchi in the 16th minute.
Dabang Mumbai created several chances but failed to get past Rays goalkeeper Lovell in third quarter of the game.
Ranchi goalkeeper Tyler Lovell frustrated the Mumbai team with his outstanding display throughout the game.
Into the fourth quarter, Ranchi won a penalty corner in the 47th minute. They subsequently won a penalty stroke for a body stop by Mumbai defender on the goal line. The stroke was converted easily by the Rays captain Jackson, scoreline reading 5-2. In the 51st minute, Mumbai won a penalty corner. Harmanpreet’s shot was saved by Lovell but Yousuf Affan scored on a rebound to make it 5-3. With three minutes remaining on the clock, Imran scored the third field goal for Ranchi to make it 7-3. Dabang Mumbai vied to get something out of the game in the dying minutes but failed and the match ended 7-3 in Ranchi’s favour.
Ranchi Rays goalkeeper Tyler Lovell was adjudged the Man of the Match for his exceptional saves throughout the match.
The next match of the league is scheduled today and will be played between Kalinga Lancers and Jaypee Punjab Warriors in Bhubaneswar.