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Halappa pilots Lions to win over Marines

Halappa pilots Lions to win over Marines

India discard Arjuna Halappa scored a brace in Karantaka's 4-2 win over Mumbai in the World Series Hockey.

Mumbai: India discard Arjun Halappa led from the front in brilliant fashion, scoring a brace of goals and assisting in the third as cellar outfit Karnataka Lions whipped Mumbai Marines 4-2 in a fast-paced World Series Hockey (WSH) clash at the MHA-Mahindra Stadium on Friday.

After Marines had gone in front against the run of play through their sharp-shooter Joga Singh in the 6th minute, it was the Lions who ruled the roost as they pumped in three goals in the second quarter, the first two in a five-minute burst by Halappa who also did the spadework for the third scored by Naveen Kumar in the 32nd minute.

Leading 3-1 at the halfway stage, the Lions increased the lead to 4-1 when Len Aiyappa made no mistake with his penalty corner drive off a set-piece in the 44th minute.

The Marines reduced the margin seven minutes from the end through a field goal by Bimal Lakra, but their repeated forays in the end to score goals ended in vain as the Lions defended stoutly.

The defeat was the fourth in eight matches for the off-colour Marines, and their third at home, which kept their points tally to ten as they slipped down a rung to be seventh with this loss.

The visitors, lagging way behind at the bottom of the table, improved their tally to 9 from eight games with their third win, but remained in the 8th spot.

It was also sweet revenge for the 2-1 defeat suffered by the Lions at home against the Marines on March 8.