Jakarta: Indian men’s hockey team on Wednesday recorded its biggest ever win in international hockey by annihilating Hong Kong China 26-0 in a Pool B match of the Asian Games.
The huge gulf between the two sides was evident as India bettered its 86-year-old record when it defeated USA with a 24-1 margin in Olympics.
The record for biggest win in international hockey remains with New Zealand, who beat Samoa 36-1 in 1994.
Such was India’s dominance of India that with seven minutes to go, India took its goalkeeper off the field.
It was always expected to be a lop-sided affair between world no. 5 India and world no. 45 Hong Kong China.
Rupinderpal Singh (3rd, 5th, 30th, 45th, 59th minutes), Harmanpreet Singh (29th, 52nd, 53rd, 54th) and Akashdeep Singh (2nd, 32nd, 35th) scored a hattrick each, while Manpreet Singh (3rd, 17th), Lalit Upadhayay (17th, 19th), Varun Kumar (23rd, 30th), SV Sunil (7th), Vivek Sagar Prasad (14th), Mandeep Sinhgh (21st), Amit Rohidas (27th), Dilpreet Singh (48th), Chinglensana Singh (51st), Simranjeet Singh (53rd) and Surender Kumar (55th) were the other goal getters for India.
India did not show any mercy to their opponents, scoring four goals in the first five minutes of the match. They ended the first quarter with a comprehensive six-goal lead and made it 14-0 after adding eight in the second quarter.
It turned out to be just a practice match for India, which had trounced hosts Indonesia 17-0 in their first pool match.
The play was restricted to Hong Kong China’s half and Indian captain P R Sreejesh, guarding the goal post, was not challenged even once.
If goalkeeper Michael Chung had not made a few good saves in the third quarter, the scoreline could have been even more worse for Hong Kong China.
While Sreejesh guarded the post in the first half, Krishan Bahadaur Pathak did the duty in the second.
India will next play Japan on Friday.