Aiyappa spurs Lions

 Len Aiyappa came up with a brilliant hat-trick as Karnataka Lions outplay hosts Bhopal Badshahs 5-2 in a high-voltage match of the inaugural World Series Hockey here on Tuesday.

Aiyappa (31st minute, 45th, 50th) took his tally of goals to 13. Arjun Halappa (26th) and Naveen Kumar (65th) scored two field goals to help the Lions to retain their third place in the points table. For Bhopal, Waseem Ahmad (43rd) and Karan Bhaskaran (46th) converted
two penalty corners to reduce the margin.

Lions flourished in the second quarter and pumped in two goals to go 2-0 up at half time. The Badshahs came back all cylinders blazing in the third quarter and sounded the board twice but Aiyappa ensured the Lions had their nose ahead with two penalty corner conversions during that period. With Lions leading 4-2, there was plenty of action in the last quarter but the visitors were successful in thwarting the challenges from hosts. Lions’ Naveen Kumar found the net with five minutes to go for the hooter to hammer the final nail in their rival’s coffin.

Strykers stun Punjab

Hosts Pune Strykers stunned table-toppers Sher-E-Punjab 3-2 in a pulsating match.
Vikas Pillay (12th min) and Gurpreet Singh (29th, 31st) scored for the Strykers, while Bikramjit Singh (6th) and Gagan Ajit Singh (63rd) sounded the board for the Shers. For a team that impressed in the first round but slipped to mediocrity, the 3-2 win against the title favourites will no doubt boost Strykers tremendously.

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