• Perth, Oct 5 (IANS) India ‘A started off their second round men’s Australian Hockey League (AHL) with a 2-5 loss to Victoria in a Pool C clash here on Thursday.

    Goals from drag-flicker Chris Ciriello (18th, 34th and 49th minutes), James Webster (1st) and Aaron Klienschmidt (32nd) were enough for Victoria to register their first win of Pool C to take the three points.

    The only positive for India ‘A’ was the performance of Amit Rohidas, who converted two penalty corners in the 40th and 45th minutes.

    Victoria scored the first goal of the game with their first effort on target in the opening minute through Webster. The Victorians kept the pressure on the visitors for most part of the first quarter to keep their lead intact.

    The second quarter saw Victoria strike early again as Ciriello extended their lead through a well-taken penalty corner in the 18th minute. India struggled to make the most of their opportunities as their efforts on goal were kept out by the Victorian defence.

    The third quarter saw attacking play from both the teams as four more goals were scored through penalty corners. It was Aaron Klienschmidt who scored first in the 32nd minute to make it 3-0 in Victoria’s favour before another penalty corner saw Chris Ciriello score his second goal of the match two minutes later.

    At 0-4 down, the match was lost for the Indian team who put pressure on the Australians to cut short the lead.

    It was Rohidas who popped up with a goal through a well-converted penalty corner to open the scoring for the Indians in the 40th minute of the match.

    The defender converted his second penalty corner of the match in the 45th minute to make the scores 4-2 in Victoria’s favour at the end of the third quarter.

    Ciriello completed his hat-trick in the 49th minute to give Victoria a much-deserved 5-2 win.

    India ‘A’ will play Queensland in their next match on Friday.

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    The IANS was founded by Indian American publisher Gopal Raju as the India Abroad News Service. It was later renamed the Indo-Asian News Service.

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