Ranchi: Rupinder Pal Singh scored twice as Delhi Waveriders maintained their unbeaten record in the Hero Hockey India League by beating Ranchi Rhinos 5-4 in a thrilling match.
Besides Rupinder, Akashdeep Singh, Gurvinder Singh Chandi and Tim Jenniskens scored a goal each for the visitors at the Astroturf Stadium.
For Rhinos, Ashley Jackson scored twice, while Justin Ross and Mandeep Singh scored a goal each.
"This is the best match of the tournament so far," Waveriders' skipper Sardar Singh said.
With this victory, Waveriders took their total points to 22, eight clear of second-placed Uttar Pradesh Wizards.
Delhi Waveriders were quick to get off the blocks, and went ahead in the fifth minute. Gurvinder Singh Chandi hit a strong hit from top of the circle, and Akashdeep Singh deflected the ball in the goal, giving Rhinos goalkeeper no chance.
The lead, however, didn't last long as Rhinos' Moritz Fuerste struck a hard hit, towards Justin Ross in the centre of the Delhi circle, which he stopped, swung around and then came up with a reverse hit to the left corner.
Rhinos had a chance to take the lead in the 22nd minute, when Moritz took the goalkeeper out of his position, beat him, and made an accurate pass to Mandeep Singh, who had to just tap the ball in an empty goal.
However, Mandeep inexplicably missed the ball completely, as it went just inches away from the goal-post.
Five minutes later, Rhinos again could have gone ahead, as Sardar Singh made a blunder. He tried to back-pass the ball, but ended up miss-passing it to Rhinos' Nick Wilson.
Wilson beat the lone defender, drew the goalkeeper out, and struck the shot with goalkeeper out of his position, as the ball just went wide of the right post.
Rhinos had to pay for these missed chances in the third quarter, as Waveriders scored twice. Rhinos did take the lead though, before that.


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