Melbourne : India crashed to a 2-3 defeat against arch-rivals Pakistan in the bronze medal play-off. Pakistan walked away with their first medal in the event in eight years.
Three-time Champions Trophy winners Pakistan’s last medal came at Lahore in 2004, where too they won the bronze by overcoming India in the play-off.
In fact, Pakistan’s last four medals in the Champions Trophy have come at the expense of India, who have lost bronze medal matches to Pakistan in 2002, 2003, 2004 and now in 2012.
India, who came to the Champions Trophy on basis of a wildcard after finishing last in the London Olympics, took the early lead when V.R. Raghunath converted a penalty corner by sending a low drag-flick into the left corner.
Pakistan then applied pressure to cause problems for the Indian defence, while at the other end, the Indian forwards messed up some openings due to their wayward shooting.
Pakistan equalised in the 22nd minute through Muhammad Rizwan Junior, who sent a soaring shot from top of the circle after being put in possession by Fareed Ahmed.
India created a lot of openings in the next 10 minutes, but failed to score, and were lucky to be tied 1-1 at half-time as unmarked Muhammad Waqas shot wide after getting a loose ball on top of the circle.
India started the second half by earning a penalty corner, but Raghunath’s shot was too weak to cause any threat to the rival goal.
Pakistan went ahead seven minutes into the second session when Rasool’s bouncing shot from close range beat goalkeeper TR Potunuri. The game was put out of India’s reach by Ateeq’s penalty corner conversion in the 66th minute, when he sent a carpet shot into the right corner give Pakistan a 3-1 lead with four minutes remaining. India forced two penalty corners in the last two minutes and Rupinder converted the last of their five penalty corners with a firm shot in the 70th minute.