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Sultan Azlan Shah Cup: Mandeep scores hat-trick as India stun Japan

Mandeep struck three goals in 45th, 51st and 58th minute to help India beat Japan.

SNS | New Delhi |

Indian midfielder Mandeep Singh scored a hat-trick as Indian men’s hockey team outclassed Japan 4-3 in a high-spark pool game of the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Malaysia on Wednesday.

The 22-year-old hockey wizard struck three goals in 45th, 51st and 58th minute to turn the fortunes for the men-in-blue, who lost their last game 1-3 to Australia on Tuesday.

India came with winning intentions as the drag-flicker Rupinder Pal Singh scored in the eighth minute to give them an early lead over Japan.

The spirited Indians, however, lost their momentum midway and appeared under pressure in next two quarters of the game.

Kasuma Murata scored the equaliser for Japan in the 13th minute, bringing them back in the game.

Heita Yoshihara and Genki Mitani netted in the 43rd and 45th minute to extend Japan’s lead over India.

This was India’s second win in the ongoing tournament. 

Next in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup, they are scheduled to play the host Malaysia on Friday.