The Indian men’s hockey team came up with a disjointed and dispirited performance as it went down 0-7 to world No. 1 Australia in the final at the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games here on Monday.
The Indians, who had reached the final for the first time since 2014, had to be satisfied with the silver medal as they found the Aussies too strong to handle and quietly accepted the spanking, coming close only on a few occasions to trouble the Aussie goalkeeper.
Nathan Ephraums (14th, 42nd min) and Jacob Anderson (22nd, 27th min) scored a brace each for Australia while Blake Govers (9th min), Tom Wickham (22nd) and Flynn Ogilvie (46th min) contributed one goal each to the Kookaburras’ score.
Australia have never lost the final since the sport was introduced at Kuala Lumpur in 1998. This is India’s third defeat in the Commonwealth Games men’s hockey final.
The Aussies went on the attack from the start and earned two penalty corners in the first few minutes of the first quarter. The Indian defenders stopped them on both occasions but once Blake Govers converted the penalty corner, the floodgates seemed to open as Australia led by two goals at the end of the first quarter and 5-0 at halftime.
They scored one goal each in the next two quarters, reminding fans of their 8-0 win in the 2010 finals in New Delhi.
India have never won the men’s hockey gold in the Commonwealth Games and they will have to wait for four more years to realise that dream.