In a dramatic showdown in Salalah, Oman, the Indian Men’s Hockey Team clinched a historic victory in the inaugural Men’s Hockey 5s Asia Cup 2023. They secured the title by triumphing over their arch-rivals, Pakistan, in a thrilling penalty shootout. This momentous win not only earned India a coveted spot in the forthcoming FIH Men’s Hockey5s World Cup Oman 2024 but also marked a watershed moment as it was their first-ever triumph against Pakistan in the Hockey 5s format after three fiercely contested encounters.
In a stunning comeback, India battled back from a 2-4 deficit in the second half, ultimately forcing the game into a shootout with two crucial goals from Mohammed Raheel. The shootout witnessed Pakistan squandering all their opportunities, while Maninder Singh delivered the decisive blow to secure India’s second goal in the shootout. Prior to this remarkable final, India had dominated the semifinals, routing Malaysia with a resounding 10-4 victory.
Pakistan’s journey to the final saw them overpower Oman with a commanding 7-3 win. In recognition of their exceptional performance and this significant victory, Hockey India announced a reward of Rupees Two Lakh for each player of the triumphant team, along with Rupees One Lakh for each member of the support staff. Hockey India President, Dilip Tirkey, extended his heartfelt congratulations to the team for both their qualification for the FIH Men’s Hockey5s World Cup Oman 2024 and their gold medal win.
Youth Affairs and Sports Minister Anurag Singh Thakur also took to social media to express his congratulations to the Indian Men’s Hockey Team for their historic victory in the inaugural Men’s Hockey 5s Asia Cup 2023 in Salalah, Oman. In his message, Mr. Thakur lauded the team’s resilience and determination, emphasizing that their triumph showcased the remarkable talent and dedication of the players. He commended them for their outstanding performance and for earning their place in the upcoming Hockey5s World Cup, which will be hosted in Oman.