India Beats Germany to Bag Bronze Medal at Olympics

5 Aug, 2021 10:18 IST|Sakshi Post

Olympics: India wins a bronze medal at the Olympics in Tokyo, their first in hockey since 1980.

India vs. Germany, Tokyo Olympics: India's men's hockey team won bronze after defeating Germany 5-4.

On Thursday, India's men's hockey team beat Germany to win the bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics. India hasn't won an Olympic medal in hockey since the 1980 Moscow Olympics when they won gold.

After a 41-year wait, the Indian men's hockey team won an Olympic medal. The last of India's eight Olympic gold medals were won at the 1980 Moscow Games.

The eight-time Olympic gold medalists, who have endured a painful downturn over the previous four decades, have made their recent revival count in the greatest possible way by winning an Olympic medal.

It was a nail-biter between the two teams that went all the way down to the last minute.

India had to come back from behind twice in the match to tie the score and then go on to win. Coach Graham Reid's team displayed remarkable poise in the final minutes of the game to write history.

Germany took an early lead over India, with Timur Oruz scoring within the first two minutes of the game. In the first quarter, Germany caused problems for the Indian defence, but they were unable to expand their lead.

In the second quarter, India's Simranjeet Singh scored on a well-executed tomahawk shot, but Germany scored two more goals within two minutes due to defensive blunders. Just when it appeared like India could be in trouble, Hardik Singh scored on the rebound from the first penalty corner, and Harmanpreet Singh slammed the second penalty corner into the back of the nets with a spectacular drag-flick to tie the game at 3-3 at halftime.

Rupinder Pal Singh struck a penalty stroke when Mandeep Singh was tripped within the scoring circle in the third quarter, turning the tide entirely in India's favour. Simranjeet Singh scored from open play minutes later after Gurjant Singh dribbled past the German defence from the right flank and delivered the ball to him in front of the goal. Simranjeet made no mistakes, striking the ball cleanly into the net to increase India's advantage.

Lukas Windfeder scored on a penalty corner in the last quarter, but it wasn't enough for Germany to force the game into the shootouts. In the closing seconds of the game, Germany was awarded a penalty corner, but India goalkeeper PR Sreejesh produced a spectacular save to deny Windfeder this time, as Manpreet Singh and his teammates created history in Tokyo.

India's top scorers

Simranjeet Singh (17th and 34th minutes) scored a hat trick, while Hardik Singh (27th), Harmanpreet Singh (29th), and Rupinder Pal Singh (31st) scored for India.

Timur Oruz (2nd), Niklas Wellen (24th), Benedikt Furk (25th), and Lukas Windfeder (2nd) scored for Germany (48th).

The Indian team, led by Manpreet Singh and coached by Australian Graham Reid, savoured the historic occasion with tears and hugs on the pitch.

So far, India has won four medals in Tokyo (with a fifth confirmed). Mirabai Chanu earned silver in the 48kg category, boxer Lovlina Borgohain took bronze in the women's welterweight division, and shuttler PV Sindhu took bronze in the women's singles tournament. Wrestler Ravi Kumar Dahiya, meanwhile, has been awarded a medal and will participate in the gold medal battle on Thursday afternoon.

India's men's hockey team had a successful voyage to the Tokyo Olympics, defeating New Zealand 3-2 in their opening group game and going on to win group matches against Germany (2-0), Spain (3-1), Argentina (3-1), and Japan (5-3) respectively. Except for a 7-1 loss to Australia and a 5-2 semifinal loss to World Champions Belgium, India won all of their games in Tokyo.

In the history of the Olympics, this is India's third bronze medal in hockey. The other two were held in Mexico City in 1968 and Munich in 1972, respectively.

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