Hosts Pune District Hockey Association (PDHA) launched their campaign in grand fashion as they pulled off a deserving 5-1 win over a doughty Goa in a boys' pool 'C' league match of the 35th Junior (under-20) National Hockey Championship for boys and girls, organised by the Pune District Hockey Association, under the auspices of the Indian Hockey Federation, at the Major Dhyanchand ground, Pimpri-Chinchwad, Nehrunagar, on Saturday evening.
The Pune side was clearly the better of the two, but found Goa goalkeeper Naveen M difficult to beat and were unable to find the net in the first half.
But after the change of ends, the Pune lads combined effectively to take the match away. Pramod Shingede and Deep Patel, with two goals each, played a stellar role in the victory while Vinit Kamble got the fifth. For Goa, Bashir Tirkey scored the lone goal.
Meanwhile, Other Districts, a team comprising players, from the surrounding districts of Maharashtra, overcame Bihar 4-2 in a pool 'G' match.
Earlier, Manipur got the better of Kerala 3-2 in a pool 'A' match. M Shitananda, N Jilleie and K H Rabikanta were on target for the winners while for Naushad E and Rashman U V scored a goal apiece.
In another match in the same pool, SAIL proved too strong for Rajasthan as they cruised to an overwhelming 10-0 victory. Sunil Kanduna got a brace while Aijub Ekka, Jitendra Yadav, David Dung Dung, Mikhal Barla, Sushil Xalxo, Sunil Toppo, Sukhwinder Singh and Adnan Wasim chipped in with one each.
Pool 'A': Manipur 3 (M Shitananda, N Jilleie, K H Rabikanta) bt Kerala 2 (Naushad E, Rashman U V); SAIl 10 (Sunil Kanduna 2, Aijub Ekka, Jitendra Yadav, David Dung Dung, Mikhal Barla, Sushil Xalxo, Sunil Toppo, Sukhwinder Singh, Adnan Wasim) bt Rajasthan 0.
Pool 'C': Pune District Hockey Association 5 (Pramod Shingede 2, Deep Patel 2, Vinit Kamble) bt Goa 1 (Bashir Tirkey ).
Pool 'E': MPSHA 10 (Arman Qureshi 3, Kamlesh Rai 3, Shailendra B 2, Vikas Choudhray, Rana Pratap) bt Hyderabad 1 (D Praddep K).
Pool 'G': Other Districts 4 (Samir Bhusale 3, Sagar Dhere) bt Bihar 2 (Amrendre, Satish).