Debutant Gangpur-Odisha clinch title

Bhubaneswar: Debutant Hockey Gangpur-Odisha beat Maharashtra 3-2 in a keenly fought final to clinch the Hockey India Senior Men’s National Championship 2014 (Division B) on Friday.

Both teams played positive and attacking hockey at the Major Dhyan Chand Hockey Stadium at Lucknow. International star William Xalxo brought the first cheer for Odisha men, when he netted a field goal in the very first minute of the high voltage game. But Maharashtra equalized just after two minutes through its skipper Vishal Pillay.

Maharashtra then took the lead in the 29th minute with Vinit Kamble netted the second goal for his side. But once again Odisha came back strongly to level the score 2-2 as Bikash Toppo scored in the 35th minute.

After an intense first half, both teams preferred to play a waiting game after change of sides, until Ashish Anmol Minz scored the most important goal of the match in the 52nd minute. Despite several attempts Maharashtra failed to level the score-line, but Gangpur-Odisha boys did well to hold on their lead and eventually won the match.