Champions Trophy: India lose to Aus, settle for silver

RSTV Bureau
London : The India team walk round the pitch after lodging a protest concerning the penalty shoot out during the 1st and 2nd place match between Australia and India on day six of the FIH Men's Champions Trophy at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London. Friday June 17, 2016. AP/PTI

London : The India team walk round the pitch after lodging a protest concerning the penalty shoot out during the 1st and 2nd place match between Australia and India on day six of the FIH Men’s Champions Trophy at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London. Friday June 17, 2016. AP/PTI

The Indian hockey team settled for a silver medal in its best ever Champions Trophy performance after the side went down 1-3 to world champions Australia in the final which had a nail-biting finish.

The match was marred by controversy in the penalty shootout as India cried foul.

Only Harmanpreet Singh was able to score in the shootout, while SK Uthappa, SV Sunil and Surender Kumar all hit wide off the target. Just four attempts were required from the two teams as Australia had gained a winning 3-1 lead.

Aran Zalewski, Daniel Beale and Simon Orchard scored for Australia, while Trent Mitton’s try was blocked by goalkeeper PR Sreejesh.

The shootout did not take place without the drama. Beale’s shot was re-taken after he failed to score and sought a video review. The video umpire asked the shot to be taken again, leaving Indian coach Roelant Oltmans fuming on the sidelines.

At the end of the match, India protested against the second successful attempt awarded to Beale, delaying the final announcement on the result of the match.

The officials assembled to decide on India’s appeal as trophies were removed from the ground and fans also left the stadium.

After discussing the appeal for more than an hour, the jury declared that there was unintentional obstruction on part of Indian goalkeeper PR Sreejesh in the seventh second thus the re-take of the shot was justified.

The presentation ceremony was later held indoors. Thus Australia clinched their 14th Champions Trophy title.

Earlier, the Aussies faced a stiff fight from the Indians, who were playing their first final, but raised the level to come within striking distance of the title.

The last time India finished on the podium was in 1982, when the Indian men had finished third to bag the bronze medal.

(With inputs from PTI)