Mumbai: A determined Northern Railway held out against a marauding Western Railway, the holders, 1-1 in a Group A league match of the 35th All India Inter-Railway Women’s Hockey tournament at the Mahindra Stadium on Thursday.
Northern surprised their opponents through a fourth minute penalty corner strike by Harpreet Kaur.

Western retaliated through a fine field goal by captain Chanchan in the 14th minute but later failed to translate their superiority into goals and had to be content with sharing the points.Hosts Central Railway scored a thumping 16-0 win over West-Central as Vandana Kataria (5), captain Saundarya (4) and Rashmi Singh (3) made merry. The other goals came through Pratibha Sawant, Usha Singh and Sushila Chanu and an own goal by West Central.

South Eastern Railway (SER), who had lost their first match to Western, scored a thumping 8-1 victory over North Central to keep their challenge in the tournament alive.Vinita Xess (5) was the top scorer, while a goal each from Anima Minz, Poonam Barla and Lawrencia Karketta completed the winners’ tally. The consolation goal for NCR was scored by Pooja Kundu.

With this win, SER need to beat Northern in their last encounter whereas the latter just need a draw to enter the next stage. The top two positions in Group B will be decided in the match between Central and Rail Coach Factory (Kapurthala).

Both are sure to go for a win in order to avoid meeting Western, who are expected to beat NCR and top Group A, in the semi-finals.

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