Quarters of national hockey championship on Thursday

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Lucknow, March 21 (IANS) The quarter-finals of the 8th Hockey India Senior Men National Championship (A Division) will be held on Thursday at the Padma Shri Mohammad Shahid Synthetic Hockey Stadium here.

A replay of last year’s final between defending champions Railway Sports Promotion Board (RSPB) and Punjab & Sind Bank is among the key clashes.

It has been an impressive campaign for RSPB as they have won all four of their Pool A matches in the competition, scoring 21 goals and just conceding once in the process.

Punjab & Sind Bank will have their task cut out as they have only registered two victories from their respective four matches, drawing the other two.

However, Punjab & Sind Bank will hope that their Indian International midfielder Satbir Singh can help his team in overcoming the tough challenge.

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In the second quarter-final, it will be Pool D toppers Comptroller & Auditor General of India (CAG) who will be up against Pool C’s second placed team in Hockey Punjab.

Both the teams finished their respective Pool matches with identical figures as they accumulated two wins and two draws to take their tally to eight points.

It will be an interesting match as CAG will look to keep their defensive shape intact as they have only conceded six goals in the competition so far.

In the third quarter-final, Pool B toppers Air India Sports Promotion Board will be facing Pool A runners-up Hockey Odisha in a well-matched contest.

The latter had failed to reach the quarter-final stage last year, but are looking to make amends this year with their fine form, winning three out of their four Pool matches, losing once to RSPB.

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The fourth quarter-final will see promoted side Petroleum Sports Promotion Board (PSPB) take on last year’s semi-finalists Hockey Chandigarh.

PSPB, consisting of experienced players like skipper Tushar Khandker, V.R. Raghunath, Birendra Lakra, Talwinder Singh and Devinder Walmiki, will look to defeat Pool D’s runners-up Hockey Chandigarh as the latter only accumulated seven points, winning two, drawing one and losing one of their four matches.

The quarter-final line-up:

8 a.m.: Railway Sports Promotion Board vs Punjab & Sind Bank

10 a.m.: Comptroller & Auditor General of India vs Hockey Punjab

2 p.m.: Air India Sports Promotion Board vs Hockey Odisha

4 p.m.: Petroleum Sports Promotion Board vs Hockey Chandigarh



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