The Indian men’s hockey team claimed a memorable 4-3 win over Malaysia at the Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium in Chennai on Saturday to clinch the prestigious Asian Champions Trophy 2023.
India completed a come-from-behind win over the Malaysians thanks to goals from Jugraj Singh, Harmanpreet Singh, Gujrant Singh, and Akashdeep Singh in the summit clash of the continental tournament.
Jurgaj opened the scoring early in the game as he put India ahead in the opening quarter to draw wild cries from the passionate capacity crowd present at the Stadium in the Tamil Nadu capital.
However, Malaysia levelled the proceedings before the end of the first 15 minutes before going on to score twice over and establish a two-goal cushion in the second quarter.
They would take the comfortable lead into halftime, but things would change for the men in blue in the third quarter. More specifically, towards the very end of the third 15 minutes of the game.
Harmanpreet converted his penalty stroke with incredible poise and confidence as he smashed the ball past the Malaysian custodian with awe-inspiring precision to cut the arrears in half.
And in an incredible two minutes for the Indian team, Gurjant put the finishing touches on a brilliant move by the hosts that looked as pleasing to the eye as it looked on the scoreboard.
Things were level at the end of the third quarter and it was everything to play for in the final quarter of the championship game.
After some gritty exchanges in the final minutes of the game, India would complete the dream come-back as Akashdeep produced a moment of magic following yet another piece of silky play from the Indian collective as the Chennai crowd egged on the home nation.
The men in blue held on to the slender lead for the remainder of the game to send the Chennai crowd into delirium as the Indian team claimed the right to hoist the prestigious trophy high up in the air.