Azlan Shah Cup shows the scale of Ireland's task in World Cup


India finished a disappointing fifth at the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup hockey tournament after handing out a 4-1 drubbing to Ireland here on Saturday.

Ireland managed to score a consolation goal in the final quarter of the game when Dale scored a well taken goal after splitting the Indian defense.

Gleghorne had a short corner blocked with just over four minutes remaining, before England removed Pinner to use Brendan Creed as a kicking-back. While the team's defence contained the Irish from taking further lead, an infringement by Ireland helped India win a penalty corner.

With 1-0 lead, India had to contain Ireland and ensure they stayed ahead.

The second quarter saw India up their energy and constantly attacked the Irish circle. Argentina, Malaysia, England and India are all still in contention.

One such attempt saw Nilam Sanjeep Xess's fierce pass from right side of the circle to find forward Shilanand Lakra poised in front of the goal.

The Azlan Shah Cup in Malaysia is a glimpse of what Ireland will experience in this year's World Cup in India, which begins in late November.

IT HAPPENED Ireland came back twice from a goal down to record their first ever win over India.

Although the Indian team lost the match, the young Indian team gave an impressive performance and tried to restrict the Olympic Gold Medalists.

Their hardwork bore fruit when they won a penalty corner with Lee Cole giving his team the shock lead in the 42nd minute. The 2-3 defeat meant India would play the same opponents once again but this time with nothing but pride on the line. After the third goal, the floodgates had opened, Gurjant Singh scored the fourth goal of the match after some clever piece of work from Talwinder.

Ireland played a much more aggresive game in the second quarter and were awarded a penalty corner for their efforts only for the decision to be overturned after India asked for a video referral.