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India finish FIH Pro League 2022-23 campaign at fourth position

New Delhi [India], July 7 (ANI): The Indian men's senior hockey side finished at number four in the FIH Pro League 2022-23, getting 30 points across 16 matches.

This is India's second fourth-place finish in the league, having attained the same spot in their debut season back in 2020-21. The Indian team upped their game in the 2021-22 season by finishing at third.

The 2022-23 campaign was a tale of two halves for the Indian team coached by Craig Fulton.

In the first leg played in home conditions, India put on a commanding performance, winning five, drawing two and losing just one match, which was to Spain by 3-2 in Bhubaneswar. They also clinched big wins over reigning world champions Germany by 3-2 and 6-3. They also won by 5-4 against Commonwealth Games champions Australia, before winning the next match by 4-3 on penalties.

The second leg, held in Europe, was not as good. Going into it, India was leading the points table. But in Europe, India managed only three wins, four losses and a draw.

India's victories came against Argentina and Belgium, with two against Argentina. But India registered losses in both their matches against the Netherlands, who would become champions in the league.

India ended their campaign on a winning note with a 2-0 win over Argentina, but it was not enough to give them their maiden title.

The Netherlands successfully defended their title, coming first over Great Britain (32 points) with 35 points from 16 games. Belgium completed the table ahead of India with 30 points because of their higher victory total (10 wins compared to India's eight).

With only three points, New Zealand came in last place and was demoted to the FIH Men's Nations Cup for the upcoming campaign.

Intriguingly, India triumphed in all three of their FIH Pro League 2022-23 shootouts: 3-1 against Spain, 4-3 over Australia, and 4-2 over Great Britain.

India skipper Harmanpreet Singh claimed the top spot in the goalscoring list with 18 goals. The penalty corner specialist also topped the goal-scoring charts last season with 18 goals. (ANI)