Spain off to a perfect start
Formidable Spain started their hockey World Cup campaign on a perfect note, outclassing South Africa 4-2 in the inaugural match of the quadrennial event at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium in New Delhi on Sunday.
Spain scored two goals in both the halves through Roc Oliva (19th minute), David Alegre (21st), Rodrigo Garza (46th) and Pau Quemada (60th) while for South Africa Julian Hykes (17th) and Ian Haley (29th) hit two goals in the first period.
South Africa gave a good fight but failed to convert the chances that got their way.
Image: Spanish players celebrates after winning the match
England upset mighty Australians
European champion England registered the first upset of the FIH World Cup, stunning Olympic silver medallist Australia 3-2 in second Pool B match.
Ashley Jackson (25th minute) and James Tindall (34th, 45th) were sounded the board for England, while captain Jamie Dwyer (24th, 66th) scored both the goals for the World number two Australia.
The Australians might consider themselves unlucky as they earned as many as 12 penalty corners but wasted all of them, whereas English side scored from two of their three short corners.
Australian coach Ric Charlesworth said the video referral system made his team's life difficult, as there were many wrong decisions against them during the 2-3 loss.
"The umpires made lots of decisions against us and the video referral decisions went against us. It happened in the Champions Trophy in Australia last year also. But it is the system here, what can we do?" he said at the post-match press conference.
Image: England players stun Aussies
India off to a flier
Sandeep Singh scored twice from penalty-corners as India beat Pakistan 4-1 in their opening match of the Hero Honda 12th men's Hockey World Cup at the Major Dhyan Chand National stadium in Delhi on Sunday.
The ace drag-flicker scored in the 35th and 57th minute to enable India avenge a 3-6 Champions Challenge defeat to the subcontinental rivals in Salta, Argentina, in December.
The eight-time Olympic champions, who won the World Cup in 1974, led 2-0 at half-time. They got their other goals through Shivendra Singh (27th minute) and Prabhjot Singh (37th).
Sohail Abbas scored from a penalty-corner 11 minutes from time to reduce the margin for Pakistan.
Sandeep Singh declared the named man-of-the-match.
Image: Shivendra Singh celebrates after scoring a goal
'It is like celebrating Holi in advance'
Experienced forward Prabhjot Singh, who scored a goal, said it was like celebrating 'Holi' a day in advance.
"We were delighted to win the match, we played as a team. It is like celebrating "Holi' in advance," Prabhjot said after the match.
Drag-flicker Sandeep Singh, who scored two goals, was happy to have contributed to the team's cause and said his side will have to now think of playing Australia.
"I am happy to have scored twice and helped the team win. It is great feeling but we have a tough match against Australia on Tuesday.
"Australia are a very strong side though they lost to England today. We have a job at hand," said Sandeep.
Image: Prabjot Singh celebrates after scoring