India were held to a 2-2 draw by Malaysia in the 1st Asian Men Champions Trophy at Ordos, China today.
The goal scorers for the unbeaten Indians were Ravi Pal (9th min) and Danish Mujtaba (52nd min) while Tajuddin Jalil and Mohd. Amin Rahim struck for Malaysia in the 24th and 32nd minutes respectively.
A win against Malaysia would have assured India a place in the final but they will now have to wait till Friday when they clash with arch rivals Pakistan. India began aggressively with strikers Gurvinder Singh Chandi, Danish Mujtaba and SV Sunil making inroads into the Malaysian defence. They drew first blood in the ninth minute when Sunil’s shot was padded away to Ravi Pal who picked up the high rebound to push home.Malaysia reacted fiercely and got the equalizer from their third penalty corner when Tajuddin Jalil deflected the flick past Indian goalkeeper Sreejesh in the 24th minute.
They broke into the lead eight minutes later when a terrible error was committed by Sreejesh who kick the ball to an Indian defenders leg and thus conceded another penalty corner which Mohammed Amin sank into the goal.
After the break Malaysia forced the pase getting four consecutive penalty corners but were unable to score.
India went hunting for their second goal but the Malaysian defenders did not give any open space for the strikers with very strict man to man marking.
India eventually found the equaliser in the 52nd minute when midfielder Gurbaj Singh essayed a brilliant central cross from the right flank to the diving Danish Mujtaba who made no mistake.
India with eight points from two victories and two draws will play their last round robin league match against Pakistan on Friday.
Malaysia are out of contention now for the final as they have four points from as many matches.