As India gets set to face colossal Australia in the gold medal match of the Men’s Hockey, memories of 2010 Commonwealth Games freshen up. Four years ago Kookaburras handed India 8-0 hammering in the final to clinch the gold in New Delhi.
India placed in pool A finished second to unbeaten Australia in their preliminary games. Indian Men’s hockey team started their Commonwealth games campaign with a 3-1 win over Wales and then emphatically defeated hosts Scotland 6-2. World Champions and current gold-medallists Australia earlier in a preliminary match proved to be a tough nut to crack for India as Kookaburras dished out 4-2 defeat to them. India then in a virtual quarter-final bounced back against South Africa and drubbed them 5-2 to make it to the semi-finals. In the semi-final clash against New Zealand, India displayed stunning show of Hockey as they came from two goals down to beat Kiwis 3-2 and set up a final against Australia.
India certainly have shown some improvement after the World Cup debacle earlier this year and have been impressive so far even though going down against Australia. Skipper Sardar Singh who missed the all-important Semi-final following his suspension after the game against South Africa will be back thus strengthening the team.
It won’t be an easy walk in the park for India considering Australia have been the dominant force in the Hockey World for quite a time now. Australia recently lifted their second successive World Cup title and third overall. In Commonwealth Games this year Australia topping the pool A have not lost any of the matches so far and crushed each and every opponent on their way to the finals.
Australia who will be chasing their fifth consecutive gold medal will be an arduous task for India to counter and they have to be at their best with sticks in hand.A win for India will undoubtedly put smile on faces of fans back home, who have been waiting for aneffervescent performance for a long time. Can India glow with gold? Fingers crossed!