LAHORE - Young Pakistan hockey team routed visitors Oman 3-0 in the third test of the four-match Under-18 hockey test series here at the National Hockey Stadium on Tuesday.

Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) management played not only their reserves over long periods of time but also gave chance to a couple of standbys. The team even had a new captain for the match in full back Rizwan Ali.

The new look side looked unsettled early on and the first 10 minutes witnessed mainly mid field game. Pakistan gradually gained rhythm and the first real chance came in the 12th minute but Zain Ijaz failed to trap the ball in the circle. The hosts had their first penalty corner in the 17th minute, Amjad Ali’s high flick to the top left corner gave the rival custodian no chance. It was also Pakistani’s first penalty corner goal of the series.

Pakistan didn’t take the foot off the gas and a spate of penalty corners ensued. Poor stoppage was the main reason for the wastage. Finally off the fifth penalty corner in the 24th minute, Amjad again found the target, this time through a strong push on goal keeper’s left side.

When the sixth penalty corner arrived, Pakistan opted for an indirect drill as Amjad was on the bench but the Omani defence cleared the ball. Oman’s best chance of the first half came in the last minute, a sweeping move resulted in a fine opportunity but Rashad Hameed faltered. Pakistan remained in control throughout the last 25 minutes. At the half time, Pakistan was leading the match 2-0.

On resumption, Pakistan were off the blocks quickly. In the 37th minute, a chance fell to Waqar via Ahmad Nadeem’s spade work but he shot wide and high. Immediately afterwards, Nadeem sent a beautiful minus to the top of the circle but it wasnt availed.

Suddenly, Oman looked ominous and thrice penetrated into the scoring zone in quick succession but the Pakistani defence stood firm. After sustaining pressure for almost 10 minutes, Pakistanis regrouped and began raiding the Omani goal and managed to successfully transform the 11th penalty corner into the goal by Amjad Ali through a very strong high flick which went to Omani goal keeper’s right side. Thus the Bannu boy completed his hat trick in the 67th minute.

Pakistan’s coach Mudassar Ali Khan said: “We gave chances to our reserve players and also experimented with new tactics. Purpose is to provide good match practice and confidence to the players before the boys Asia Cup in Bangladesh starting in a few days. Though, we didn’t score as many goals as in the second test but Pakistan dominated most of the time while converting penalty corners was a big plus point.”