India, Spain and Pakistan entered the competition at the Standard Chartered Bank FIH Junior Men's World Cup today in style, recording big wins in their opening matches.
In the second round of matches in pool A, Argentina dispatched Russia 9:3, conceding three goals in inattentive phases in a match they otherwise comprehensively dominated. Fast and powerful in attack, the current World Champions' team effort highlighted the Russian team's shortcomings where the individual pieces do not quite come together or fall into place. Despite their win, Argentina trail Pakistan in the pool A pool table, as Pakistan recorded their second trio of points today after a hard-earned victory over Egypt.
Pool B's Germany picked up their second consecutive win, defeating South Africa 4:0 to claim the solitary table lead ahead of Australia who entered the tournament with a 4:0 victory over Chile today. With two rounds of matches not yet fully played, these results as well as their standout performances amongst the teams in the pool already make these two teams big favorites to advance from pool B.
Spain was the latecomer in pool C, and made a grand entrance with a 9:0 win over the USA. After a rocky beginning, needing some time to find their rhythm, the Spaniards added goals at a steady pace and treated their inexperienced opponents a lesson in the game. With this appearance, Spain have confirmed their status as a top contender in this tournament, but it wasn't an entirely good day for the Iberians: one player left the field with a suspected finger fracture, and the video operator was hit by a stray ball in warm-up, doing extensive damage to his face.
In the second pool C match, Korea fought down the Malaysian hosts for their second victory, maintaining the table lead ahead of Spain. A pair of penalty corner goals was enough to seal the deal, as fired up by the vocal crowd once more filling the stadium beyond capacity, Malaysia fought tooth and nail but could not get back at the Koreans.
Finally, India entered the competition today as the last pool D team to do so, and entered the scene with a bang, recording the first two-digit score of the competition with a 10:0 win against Singapore. Led by highly talented team captain Diwakar and his fierce penalty corners, India with their last goal of the match also completed the first century of goals in this tournament. The top of the table nonetheless remains in Dutch hands, as the Netherlands picked up their second win in as many matches with victory over Poland - after an inital scare that saw Bartek Siejkowski give his team an early lead. The Oranjes came back with a vengeance however, and eventually walked off the pitch with a 7:2 scoreline under their belts.
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