HOBART: In the final of Australia’s National Junior Hockey Championships, Pakistan defeated New South Wales state team 3-2 to win the title.
Coming to the final, New South Wales were the only undefeated side in the 10 team competition and were also the side which had inflicted Pakistan their only loss of the tour; by the same score in the pool match.
Pakistanis played according to a plan right from the start. They went ahead in the 13th minute through a field goal by Naveed Alam who ended up the tournament as Pakistan’s top scorer with five goals. In the 24th minute, the Pakistani Colts extend the lead when Ahmed Nadeem gave the final touch to a penalty corner.
The score at half-time was: 2-0. After resumption, Pakistani youngsters continued searching for the target and were rewarded in the 44th minute. This time Ahmed Nadeem had his second goal via open play.
Down by three goals, New South Wales didn’t give up. Within four minutes, they were awarded a penalty stroke and their most prolific scorer Ehren Hazell cashed in on it. It stayed 1-3 with just five minutes to go, Daine Richards converted a penalty corner to reduce Pakistan’s lead to a bare minimum. However, New South Wales could not score the equaliser.
Photos Courtesy: PHF