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India outplay Spain 4-2, win hockey series 2-1

The Indian hockey team ended their European tour on a high as they comfortably beat Spain 4-2 in the final encounter thanks to forward Ramandeep Singh's magnificent brace to win the three-Test series 2-1

Terrassa (Spain): Forward Ramandeep Singh struck twice as India defeated Spain 4-2 in the third and final match to clinch the hockey series 2-1 here on Thursday.

Ramandeep turned out to be the hero with double strikes from the field within a minute's gap (50th and 51st min) to clinch the match for Sardar Singh's boys. Drag-flicker Rupinder Pal Singh (24th min) and Akashdeep Singh (45th minute) were the other scorers for the Indian team. For Spain, Ricardo Santana (25th min) and Xavier Lleonart (49th min) were the scorers.

The Indians played an aggressive game, troubling the Spanish defence with fast counter-attacks at regular intervals.

Chinglensana Singh could have put the visitors ahead in the second quarter when he found himself unmarked inside the Spanish penalty circle. The midfielder, however, fired his attempt wide.

India did not have to wait too long for the lead as Rupinder smashed home a penalty corner in the 24th minute.

Spain hit back in the very next minute as Santana dribbled past a couple of Indian defenders to score the equalizer.

The Indians continued to attack relentlessly despite Spanish attempts to slow the pace of the game. The Indian efforts bore fruit when Akashdeep showcased some excellent dribbling skills before beating the Spanish goalkeeper with a well-placed attempt.

In the fourth quarter, Spain put an extra player in their attacking line up which allowed them to put the Indian defence under pressure.

After several attempts went abegging, Lleonart finally breached the Indian defence to put the hosts back on level terms.

However, any hopes of a Spanish win was quickly extinguished by Ramandeep who utilised a couple of long balls from the midfield to score back-to-back field goals in the 50th minute.

Spain got a chance to come back in the dying moments, but Indian custodian P.R. Sreejesh came up with an excellent save to facilitate India's 4-2 win.

With this, the Roelant Oltmans-coached India completed their European tour with series wins over Spain and France (2-0).

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