February 24, 2014

Delhi Waveriders win Hero Hockey India League

Delhi Waveriders defeated Jaypee Punjab Warriors in the penalty shoot- out to emerge as the champions in the second edition of Hero Hockey India League at the packed Astroturf Hockey Stadium in Ranchi on Sunday.
It came as a befitting result for last year's runners-up Waveriders, who made their second consecutive final of HIL. The Waveriders beat Warriors 3-1 in the shoot-out after the regulation 70 minutes ended in a 3-3 tie. Majority of the credit should go to the Waveriders goalie Nicolas Jacobi, who had a brilliant day under the bar and made numerous saves to guide the Delhi side to the title.
Apart from making quite a few saves in the regulation time, Jacobi stood like a rock in the shoot-out to deny Warriors' first three attempts before Robert Hammond scored from the one-on-one situation. But it was not enough as the Waveriders scored three out of their four chances in the shoot-out to run away with the glittering trophy and Rs 2.5 crore prize purse. The Warriors took home Rs 1.25 crore, while the last year's champions Ranchi Rhinos pocketed Rs 75 lakh for finishing third. Earlier in the day, the Rhinos defeated Uttar Pradesh Wizards too on penalty shoot-out to claim the third place.  The Rhinos defeated UP Wizards 3-2 in the shoot-out after both the teams were locked at 1-1 at regulation time.
Delhi Waveriders is a field hockey franchise based in Delhi that plays in the Hockey India League. It is owned by Wave Group. The owners of Delhi franchise paid an amount of $78,000 (INR42.5 lacs) for Sardar Singh in the auction, making him the highest-paid Indian player of the league. Sardar Singh was announced as the captain of the team. The team is coached by Ajay Kumar Bansal and former Indian captain Ajit Pal Singh acts as the chief advisor for the team.