Pakistan bounced back from warm-up defeats to hold Spain to a 1-1 draw and earn a point on the opening day of the men’s field hockey competition that kicked off at the Riverbank Arena in London.
Striker Rehan Butt was the scorer for Pakistan while Pau Quemada struck for the Spaniards immediately after Pakistan’s goal. The Greenshirts, who suffered warm-up defeats to Belgium and the Netherlands, had a slow start with Spain dominating the first five minutes. However, the Sohail Abbas-led team took hold off proceedings to go even in the rest of the session.
They earned the first of two penalty-corners in the 11th minute and Abbas, who returned after a two-minute suspension, failed to beat Spain’s goal-keeper Francisco Cortes who blocked a fast drag-flick with his left glove. Spain also missed their 17th-minute penalty-corner while their goalie made another superb save with the stick on a left-drag flick on Abbas’ second attempt in the 21st-minute short corner.
With the first session ending goal-less, both teams opened their accounts after exchanging attacks. Pakistan got the lead when Butt scored in the 45th minute. However, Spain wasted no time to draw level with Quemada finding the gap in middle of Imran Shah’s feet.
Pakistan coach delighted with draw
Meanwhile, Pakistan coach Khwaja Junaid was delighted with the drawn game.
“It’s a good start,” Junaid told The Express Tribune from London. “The positive thing is that the players looked organised and played as a team. The biggest plus was that our defence was up to the mark. Players were there to cover each other every time. We also created chances but Spain’s goal-keeper was outstanding today.”
Junaid said the team will try to capitalise on a positive start in the upcoming matches.
Team lacking spirit:
Meanwhile, Samiullahsaid the team spirit was missing in the opening game.
“I observed there was a lot of stress on individuals,” said the Olympian. “There were no short passes which have been the strength of our team. Secondly, Pakistan should learn to score on the penalty-corners. We cannot afford to miss too many chances in the future games. But a draw against Spain is a good sign as we are ranked lower than them.”
Captain Dwyer inspires Aussie rampage
Meanwhile, captain Jamie Dwyer scored a hat-trick as world champions Australia launched their Olympics campaign with a thumping 6-0 victory over South Africa. Dwyer’s three strikes helped him equal the Australian record of 179 international goals held by Mark Hager, who is coach of the New Zealand team at these Olympics.
South Korea earlier held off a late New Zealand charge to post a 2-0 win in Pool B.
Updated at: 07 December 2013
Pak cricket team to spend the day practicing in Sharjah today SHARJAH: Pakistan cricket team arrived a day ahead of its one T20 match against Afghanistan and later series against Sri Lanka to spend the day (Friday) practicing at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Geo News reported
The national team’s T20 Captain, Mohammad Hafeez, who had stayed behind for some personal reason, also left for Dubai today.
The national team will play a one off match against Afghanistan with T20 format on 8th December (Sunday), while it will spend the day (Friday) practicing ...
Updated at: 07 December 2013
The wait is over: Pakistan Idol begins Friday KARACHI: The wait is finally over, as Pakistan Idol, the country’s biggest musical contest, is all set to begin from Friday night on Geo TV.
The first episode of the country’s biggest musical hunt will be telecast at 9 PM Friday.
The panel of judges will comprise renowned artists Ali Azmat, Hadiqa Kiyani and Bushra Ansari. ...
Nelson Mandela was indeed a great leader: Altaf LONDON: Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) Quaid, Altaf Hussain Friday, expressing his grief and sorrow over the demise of the founder of African National Congress, former president of South Africa and a great leader, Nelson Mandela, said that he was indeed a great leader, Geo News reported.
In a ... Major Shabbir Sharif Shaheed being remembered today Lahore: Major Shabbir Sharif Shaheed, who was awarded Pakistan’s highest
military decoration, is being remembered today (Friday) on his 23th martyrdom anniversary.
Major Shabbir Sharif Shaheed was also an elder brother of chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif.
Major General Sajjad Ali ... LB polls: electioneering ends in Balochistan, polling on Saturday QUETTA: Election campaign for local bodies elections ended at 12:00 midnight today and the polling will be held on Saturday.
All arrangements have been completed for LB elections 2013 scheduled to be held on Dec 07.
There are 3.2 million registered voters who would cast their votes for 4350 ... Imran says we do not want war with US ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan, Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Pervaiz Khattak and other leaders including Shah Mehmood Qureshi and Sheeri Mazari on Thursday attended the reception hosted in honour of Nato ambassadors, Geo News reported.
According to sources, ... Courts to perform much better for rule of law after my retirement: CJ ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry has expressed hope that after his retirement on December 11, the courts would perform much better for the rule of law and supremacy of constitution, Geo News reported.
The chief justice was addressing the participants of farewell dinner, hosted ...