All the news for Sunday 27 July 2014
Whetton hits 1st hat-trick
Queenslander scores first hat-trick in 7-1 win over Wales at Glasgow 2014
Australia’s men’s hockey team might have been the last to begin their Commonwealth Games campaign but they announced their arrival with a clinical 7-1 win over Wales, underpinned by Jake Whetton’s first ever international hat-trick.
Matt Gohdes’ late double added the shine to the score following two early strikes from penalty corner set-piece specialists Chris Ciriello and Kieran Govers. The margin of victory might have been greater but for a strong display from Welsh goalkeeper David Kettle, and had Mark Knowles’ penalty stroke not come off the post.
Victorian defender Ciriello began the match on the bench but made an immediate impact after coming on as he dispatched a penalty corner low beyond Kettle, remaining calm as his first effort was blocked by a defender. A minute later it was 2-0; from Australia’s second penalty corner Kieran Govers unleashed a drag flick inside the right hand post.
Trent Mitton came close to making it three inside the opening ten minutes but the Welshmen, the tournament’s lowest ranked side, cleared the danger from the goal line. And Kettle then thwarted Matt Gohdes and Mitton to prevent the Australian men from increasing their lead.
Canberra-born goalkeeper Andrew Charter was a spectator for the most part but did well to tip Wales’ only penalty corner around the post with his right foot at full stretch.
When it came, Australia’s third goal was all about great teamwork. Taking a quick free hit, Tristan White found Matthew Swann whose first time deflected pass played in Gohdes along the baseline. His pin point pass found Jake Whetton in the middle with time to trap the ball before firing it home for 3-0.
Two more Kettle saves early in the second half, denying Mitton and Whetton, indicated there would be no let up for the Welsh defence and Whetton made it 4-0 sliding in at the back post to redirect Ciriello’s perfectly weighted pass at the penalty corner. Two minutes later the 23 year-old Queenslander completed his hat-trick as he shot home from close range following good work by Daniel Beale along the baseline.
The biggest cheer of the day came as Wales pulled one back when Dan Kyriakides’ deflected the ball into the Australian goal to make it 5-1 but the world champions still had plenty in the tank. They were denied from four consecutive penalty corners before being awarded a penalty stroke for a foul on Simon Orchard. Captain Mark Knowles stepped up to the spot but as in The Hague at the World Cup, he was unfortunate to be denied by the metalwork as his flick hit the outside of the left post.
A clash of heads between Andy Philpott and Welsh captain Matt Ruxton left the latter requiring treatment before leaving the field with seven minutes remaining.
As the match entered its final five minutes, Matt Gohdes was rewarded for a livewire performance with two goals from close range, the first of which was a carbon copy of Whetton’s second involving a penetrating drive along the baseline from Beale.
Speaking afterwards, hat-trick hero Jake Whetton was pleased with how Australia began the tournament but warned there are still improvements to be made. He said, "I thought we played well in patches. There are a few things to work on but it was pretty good overall.”
And it seems his moustache is set to stay at least two more days. Explaining the facial hair, he said, "I started at the World Cup and said to my physio I would keep it until we didn't win so hopefully it will be staying around."
Chris Ciriello, the scorer of Australia’s opening goal, said afterwards, “It was quite a physical game. They sat back and tried to be physical and tried to play on the counter attack. We pretty much tried to move the ball around as much as we could and take our opportunities. Their goalkeeper played unbelievably. We had a lot of shots and he saved some from point blank range.”
Expressing his pleasure at getting their title defence underway, he added, “It’s been three or four days sitting around the village and watching everyone else play. You can only train so much and you’re still not ready for a game so it was good just to finally get started.”
Australia’s men have a rest day on Sunday before playing South Africa in the first game on Monday at 9am BST / 6pm AEST / 4pm AWST.
Australia’s women return to action on Sunday against hosts Scotland. That match begins at 9am BST / 6pm AEST / 4pm AWST.
Australia (m) v Wales
Commonwealth Games, Glasgow
AUSTRALIA: 7 (3)
Chris Ciriello 6 (PC)
Kieran Govers 7 (PC)
Jake Whetton 29, 44, 46 (FG, PC, FG)
Matt Gohdes 66, 69 (FG, FG)
WALES: 1 (0)
Dan Kyriakides 50 (FG)
Australia v Wales
Name (Hometown) Caps/Goals
Daniel Beale (Brisbane, QLD) 29/7
Kiel Brown (Toowoomba, WA) 146/4
Andrew Charter (GK) (Canberra, ACT) 71/0
Matt Gohdes (Rockhampton, QLD) 95/28
Kieran Govers (Wollongong, NSW) 94/49
Mark Knowles (Rockhampton, QLD) 240/40
Eddie Ockenden (Hobart, TAS) 216/54
Simon Orchard (Maitland, NSW) 151/46
Andrew Philpott (Melbourne, VIC) 16/1
Matthew Swann (Mackay, QLD) 108/5
Aran Zalewski (Margaret River, WA) 38/4
Chris Ciriello (Melbourne, VIC) 141/86
Fergus Kavanagh (Geraldton, WA) 185/14
Trent Mitton (Perth, WA) 57/17
Jake Whetton (Brisbane, QLD) 63/28
Tristan White (Wollongong, NSW) 30/2
Hockey Australia media release
India prove penalty corner prowess against Scotland
Scotland striker Kenny Bain celebrates his goal against India. Photo Credit: Iain Steele
The art of clinical finishing by India’s penalty corner experts was a key feature in a 6-2 win over Team Scotland in Pool A of the Men’s Hockey competition at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre today.
Two penalty corner goals each for Raghunath Ramachandra and Rupinder Singh, added to field goals from Gurbaj Singh and Gurwinder Chandi, ensured a comfortable victory that results in India sitting top of Pool A.
Nevertheless, Kenny Bain and Nick Parkes replied late on with two goals for the home side, ensuring that the Scots sit above bottom place Wales on goal difference after the Welsh rear-guard felt the full force of a 7-1 defeat to World Champions Australia earlier on in the session.
The Celtic nations will meet in a crunch match on Monday morning (11.00), with a place in the 7th/8th classification match the likely outcome.
Following the match, Head Coach Derek Forsyth said, “I was proud of the players. India have players who are full-time and have recently competed at the World Cup. We played well in spells and we just need to take our chances. On another day, we take our chances and the score looks different.
“Wales have played well and shown good structure in the games so far. It’ll be a tough match but we’ll be prepared and ready.”
Scotland midfielder and goalscorer Nick Parkes added, “The Indian squad relaxed a bit in the end and gave us the chances to put some goals in and give something to the crowd. I think we competed really well during the first half, but they are a much stronger team as they showed at the last World Cup.
“We are a bit frustrated but we will make sure we play well against Wales and later against Australia to make something good out of it.”
Scotland will have a crucial match against Wales on Monday. Photo Credit: Iain Steele
Scotland found themselves behind after only six minutes when Gurbaj Singh was allowed to create space for himself on the right hand of the scoring circle, the attacker launching a fierce drive past Scotland goalkeeper Jamie Cachia to make it 1-0.
A dangerous cross from Alan Forsyth from the right touchline almost provided Gareth Hall with an opportunity to seek an equaliser shortly afterwards, but India goalkeeper Sreejesh Raveendran was alive to clear the danger.
A low tempo exchange ensued for a period before India were awarded a penalty corner in the 23rd minute.
Alas, for the home side, the full force of Raghunath Ramachandra’s unstoppable drag-flick was too much for Cachia and his defence, the ball rattled into the goal to double the advantage for India.
Dan Coultas was unfortunate not to pull a goal back just before half-time, his efficiently struck drag-flick low to the left hand corner being beaten away to safety by Raveendran.
Scotland were left to rue the missed chance as India extended their lead two minutes into the second half. This time, Rupinder Singh stepped forward to send a low strike past Cachia to make it 3-0.
Three minutes later, the game was done and dusted when Gurwinder Chandi was able to neatly deflect a cross from the touchline into the far corner of the net for a fourth goal.
In the 45th minute, another penalty corner conceded by the Scots allowed Ramachandra to demonstrate his prowess with another powerful drag-flick that nestled in the left hand corner to increase the score to 5-0.
Shortly after, Rupinder Singh slammed the ball off the underside of the bar from another penalty corner to make it 6-0.
The Scottish cause remained resolute though and striker Kenny Bain got his side’s first goal of the competition with a brilliantly taken reverse stick strike from just inside the circle.
Nick Parkes ensured another consolation strike for Scotland right on the stroke of full-time, deflecting Coultas’ penalty corner to leave the final scoreline 6-2.
Team Scotland: Jamie Cachia, Gareth Hall, David Forsyth, Nick Parkes, Michael Bremner, Dan Coultas, Alan Forysth, Chris Grassick (c), Ian Moodie, Gordon McIntyre, Ross Stott, Chris Nelson, Kenny Bain, William Marshall, Iain Scholefield, Niall Stott.
Scottish Hockey Union media release
India thrash Scotland 6-2 in CWG hockey
GLASGOW: India dished out a dominating performance to notch up a 6-2 victory over hosts Scotland in a Pool A match in the men's hockey competition of the Commonwealth Games on Saturday.
Ranked ninth in the world, India went on a goal-spree as they rode on the scores from Gurbaj Singh (6th minute), Raghunath Ramachandra (22nd, 44th), Rupinder Singh (36th, 49th) and Gurwinder Chandi (40th) at the National Hockey Centre.
Kenny Bain (56th) and Nicholas Parkes (68th) were the goalscorer for Scotland.
India started the match as overwhelming favourites against the 25th-ranked Scotland, and the Sardar Singh-led side were completely in control of the match all through the the 70 minutes as they made frequent inroads in their rival circle and scored at ease.
The Scots, on the other hand, hardly had any answer to India's style of play. They tried to create opportunities but they were always met with the stubborn defence of India.
India started on a dominating note with Gurbaj drawing the first blood when he dodged a few defenders on the right flank and sounded the board with a powerful direct flick to give India an early 1-0 lead.
The visitors earned their first penalty corner in the eighth minute but they failed to convert. However, Raghunath didn't repeat the mistake as he converted the second set piece with an angled shot which found the right of the net.
India earned two more penalty corners in the remaining time of the first half but failed to convert as they went into the break with a 2-0 lead. The hosts also got a few chances but failed to utilise it.
After the breather, India came out all cylinders blazing as Rupinder sounded the board just one minute into the match after the visitors earned another penalty corner.
Four minutes later, Chandi scored a field goal when he deflected a shot from the right flank to put India 4-0 ahead.
The Indians continued their rampaging run as their midfield and forward line combined well to create more chances and Raghunath grabbed one such opportunity when he converted a set piece with a low flick to make it 5-0.
Forward Rupinder too was not left behind as he brought India's sixth goal, finding the right corner of the post.
Scotland's Kenny Bain finally brought some cheers to the local fans when he found the back of the post with a reverse hit from just inside the circle.
Scotland failed to convert five penalty corners and Nicholas Parkes finally scored from their sixth set piece, just a couple of minutes from the hooter, after trying a variation but by then it was too late.
The Times of India
Canadian lose heartbreaker to Malaysia at Commonwealth Games
In a very close and energetic match, Canada suffered a heartbreak against perennial rivals Malaysia, ending with a loss in a game they always seemed in a position to grab.
The Malaysian and Canadian teams are only a few spots apart in the FIH World Rankings (13th for Malaysia, 16th for Canada) and had already met each other… six times this year, in unofficial matches, at the Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh and at the Champions Challenge in Kuantan.
Malaysia had a slight edge in number of wins, but Canada won a prestige victory in a dramatic shoot-out in the semi-final of the Champions Challenge in front of a boisterous Malaysian home crowd.
Both teams were quick in action in today’s game, played in another beautiful day in Glasgow.
There were circle penetrations at both ends, play was physical, and the capacity crowd in the Scottish national Hockey Centre was kept well entertained, showing loudly its appreciation when Gordie Johnston gave a stunning display of individual skills when trapped in a corner by three opponents.
Malaysia scored on their first penalty-corner in the 15th minute, using a variation that fouled the Canadian runners.
Canada was not deterred by the set-back and kept their attacking game, but had trouble penetrating the tightly meshed Malaysian defence, or connecting with each other when they did. Their only chance of the period was on a penalty-corner, but Tupper could not capitalize and Malaysia walked into the half-time break with a slim one-goal lead.
Canada survived a penalty-corner early in second period, then had most of the control of play, besieging the Malaysian circle. Play was getting fairly rough, with many players crammed in the Malaysian defensive end, but the Malaysians always seemed to be an extra split second ahead of the Canadians in the critical moments to intercept the last pass or prevent a shot.
The final minutes of the game were played a breakneck speed from one end to the other, with Malaysia scoring in the final minute to end with a flattering two-goal cushion.
Field Hockey Canada media release
Malaysia men open hockey accounts with victory
By Aftar Singh
The Malaysian hockey players celebrate after scoring a goal against Canada in the Glasgow Commonwealth Games on Saturday. - AFP
GLASGOW: A goal in each half was enough to give the cagey Malaysian men’s hockey team a 2-0 win over Canada.
Malaysia, who came under fire after finishing last in the 12-nation World Cup in The Hague, Holland, last month, got their goals through Ahmad Kazamirul Nasruddin (14th minute) and Izwan Firdaus Ahmad Tajuddin (69th) in their Group B match at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre on Saturday.
National coach K. Dharmaraj was pleased with the opening win, especially after watching his team lose all their six matches in the World Cup.
“It was a good start for us … the win will boost the players’ morale and confidence in the coming matches,” he said.
“We had a good start by taking an early lead but our forwards failed to score despite creating a number of chances.
“I’m happy that Izwan did well to score in the dying minutes of the match.”
The result would have been different had Malaysia, who looked shaky at the start, conceded a goal in the ninth minute because of poor defending.
Luckily for Malaysia, the unmarked Gabriel Garcia failed to connect a pass by Matthew Guest.
And Malaysia, who beat Canada 3-1 in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh in March, made them pay for it five minutes later off their first penalty corner.
Defender Ahmad Kazamirul, who was dropped from the World Cup squad, got his name on the scoresheet with a low drag flick past Canadian goalkeeper David Carter.
Despite taking the early lead, the national forwards, led by S. Selvaraju, failed to make an impact.
Canada, who lost their opening match to New Zealand 3-1 on Friday, earned a penalty corner in the 29th minute but Malaysian goalkeeper Mohd Hafizuddin Othman did well to save the drag flick taken by skipper Scott Tupper.
Malaysia earned their second penalty corner three minutes into the second-half but skipper Mohd Razie Abdul Rahim failed to get it right.
Canada earned three penalty corners in the last 15 minutes of the match but goalkeeper Hafizuddin superbly thwarted them.
Izwan Firdaus went on a solo run in the 61st minute, beating two defenders, but his reverse stick attempt from the top D went just inches wide.
But it didn’t matter because, eight minutes later, Izwan doubled the lead when he collected a pass from Mohd Shahril Saabah and slammed it past Carter.
Malaysia play England on Sunday.
The Star of Malaysia
Malaysia begin with a victory
THE banana skin that Canada could have been was avoided as the Malaysian men's team opened their Commonwealth Games campaign with a 2-0 win in a Group B clash at the Glasgow Hockey Centre yesterday.
Goals by Izwan Firdaus Ahmad Tajudin and Ahmad Kazamirul Nasruddin saw Malaysia off to a flyer ahead of their clash against England today.
Assistant coach K. Gobinathan said Malaysia’s performance was satisfying.
“We wanted to see passion from the players and they certainly displayed that. Their attitude was superb and this is good as the tournament will only get tougher after this,” said Gobinathan.
The national squad consist of seniors and juniors, and Gobinathan said it was good to see how they gelled.
“There was understanding in their play and the boys played a hard-running game. However, there were mistakes which we need to sort out before we play England.”
Despite the winning start, Gobinathan said the team weren’t thinking too far ahead.
“To talk about making the semi-finals is too soon as we are taking it one match at a time. We have to play England and there is also New Zealand to think about.”
The Kiwis scalped Trinidad & Tobago 8-0 for their second win yesterday, having beaten Canada 3-1 in their opening match on Thursday.
England have only played once, beating Trinidad 6-1 on Thursday.
New Straits Times
Sikhs represent Canada, India and Malaysia at Men's hockey at Commonwealth Games
by Dil Bahra in Glasgow
Sukhpal Singh Panesar of Canada and Baljit Singh Charum of Malaysia
Malaysia defeated Canada by two goals to nil in the morning Pool B match at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre on Saturday. A goal in each half ensured Malaysia started her Commonwealth Games campaign in a winning way. Canada dominated the last 20 minutes of the match but were unable to score despite all the possession they had. Against run of play, with only a minute left on the clock, Malaysia scored the crucial second goal.
Sukhpal Singh Panesar played for Canada and Baljit Singh Charum played for Malaysia in this match.
India defeated host nation Scotland 6 - 2, their second consecutive win in the Commonwealth Games, in the afternoon's match. Gurbaj Singh opened the scoring for India in the 6th minute. Raghunath increased the lead from a penalty corner twelve minutes from half time.
India scored four goals in eleven minutes at the start of the second half, three penalty corner goals - two by Rupinder Singh and one by Raghunath.. In between these penalty corner goals, Gurwinder Singh Chandi scored a brilliant field goal from top of the circle.
Scotland, roared on by a passionate home crowd, scored two late goals by Kenny Bain and Nicholas Parkes.
Sikhs in Hockey
Double header as England teams face Malaysia
Susie Gilbert in action for England at the 2014 Commonwealth Games
Since securing two victories and six points on the opening day of Glasgow 2014 England men's and women's teams have enjoyed the luxury of two rest days; something which seldom occurs in tournament hockey.
We reckon we've got your Sunday viewing sorted as both teams fire back into action tomorrow with a double header against Malaysia at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre.
England women v Malaysia - Sunday 27 July – 1100
Venue: Glasgow National Hockey Centre
England women claimed three points from their opening game against Wales on Thursday with a hard fought 2-0 victory. England Captain Kate Richardson-Walsh said after the win, "With tournament hockey nobody remembers what the score line was in the end, they just remember how many points you had on the table so I’m really happy to get the win." England will however be looking to build on that performance when they face Malaysia - the seventh ranked side here at Glasgow 2014 - tomorrow at 11am in their second Pool B game.
England last played Malaysia at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi four years ago where squad members Nicola White, Alex Danson and Georgie Twigg were all on target that day in a 3-0 victory. Prior to that there have only been two other encounters which England won comfortably and they will be looking to secure another three points from their pool game tomorrow.
Speaking ahead of the game midfielder Susannah Townsend said, "It's hard to know exactly what to expect from a team England hasn't played since Delhi [2010 Commonwealth Games], but we will be looking to improve on our performance against Wales and stick to our game plan."
England men v Malaysia - Sunday 27 July – 2100
Venue: Glasgow National Hockey Centre
After beating Trinidad & Tobago 6-1 in their opening Pool B match at Glasgow 2014, England men's next opposition comes in the form of Malaysia tomorrow evening. The sides most recently met last month at the Rabobank Hockey World Cup; England scored two to take the win with goals coming from Mark Gleghorne and Ashley Jackson.
Of the 28 meetings between the sides England have won 15 times and drawn eight. Although Malaysia can only claim five victories, England Captain Barry Middleton and teammate Simon Mantell will vividly remember the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games 3rd/4th play-off where Malaysia won 2-0 to claim bronze.
England Captain Barry Middleton on next opponents Malaysia: "I think they’ve got a different team here to the one we played recently in the World Cup so I don’t know exactly what to expect, whether it is younger or older, but we have played them a lot in recent years. All the Asian teams are strong, they give you a good battle going forward so we have to be right on it and take a step up from our opening game against Trinidad & Tobago."
England Head Coach Bobby Crutchley on what to expect from the world number 13 side: “Malaysia are a top country [ranked sixth at Glasgow 2014] and they’ve caused us trouble in the past at the Commonwealth Games. They will be quick on the counter attack and are a well organised side.
“For us the challenge is to keep improving through the tournament, whoever we play we are looking to put a performance down and execute our game plan.”
England Hockey Board Media release
Aussies wary of home crowd
Georgie Parker expects "great atmosphere" against hosts Scotland
Georgie Parker believes Australia’s women will be faced with an extra opponent – the home crowd - when they take on host nation, Scotland, early on Sunday morning.
After scoring a hat-trick in Australia’s 9-0 win over Wales on Friday, the 25 year-old South Australian turned her attention to the World Cup silver medallists’ third of four preliminary matches, admitting, “playing against the home nation, it’s going to be a great atmosphere.”
Roared on by the patriotic home crowd, the Scots women opened their campaign on Friday with a comfortable 2-0 win over Malaysia thanks to two goals from Ailsa Wyllie. Ranked third in the pool and 16th in world, they sit level second in the pool, tied with England on three points after one match each with the Aussie women topping the standings with six points from two games.
The 9am (6pm AEST / 4pm AWST) clash will be the 25th meeting of the two teams with Australia coming out on top in 17 of the previous 24 games. Scotland has won four matches with three games drawn. With the exception of 2006 in Melbourne, they have met in every Commonwealth Games since 1998 with Australia winning on all three occasions.
ACT-born Eddie Bone will make her 50th appearance in the match just 15 months after making her debut.
Whatever the result, nothing will be settled with numerous permutations still in play for those in with a chance of reaching the semi-finals.
Hockey Australia media release
Indian women's hockey team faces Black sticks test on Sunday
GLASGOW: Having outclassed Canada in the lung opener, the Indian women's hockey team led by Ritu Rani will be facing a sterner test when they meet a formidable New Zealand side in another group league clash on Sunday.
Jaspreet Kaur was the star of the last match with two goals and the 13th-ranked team would expect that forward Ritusha Arya comes out firing on all cylinders against the 'Black Sticks'.
New Zealand's Anita Punt will be the player that India have to watch out for but skipper Ritu is confident that her girls will keep her under control.
"Victory in the very first match of the tournament has given a new dimension to the hopes and aspirations of the players. The team is in good shape and will perform its best in all aspects of the match," mid-fielder and captain Ritu said.
"The vigorous training we went through will help us to carry out well in the game and we will try not to concede goals and win by a better margin in the forthcoming match.
"While we are high on confidence but we cannot take the opponents lightly hence we are focused and aim to add to the winning tally yet again."
Chief Coach Neil Hawgood is confident of his team giving a hard time to the opponents.
"The team is in good form and their efforts are visible on the field. The girls are excited and will try to maintain the winning momentum in the event."
"We have worked on our penalty corner conversions during our practice session here today. The match against New Zealand will be a battle of wits and our team will be raring to prove their point yet again."
New Zealand eves stand fourth in the recent FIH World Rankings. India last met New Zealand in the 2006 Commonwealth Games where India overcame New Zealand 1-0.
During the 2002 Commonwealth Games, India lost to New Zealand 1-3 in the preliminary round while they exacted their revenge in the semi-finals with 2-1 win en route their gold winning performance.
The Times of India
Couzins inspired by Athletes Village
NZ Men’s hockey captain Dean Couzins says the environment that has been created by the New Zealand Olympic Committee (NZOC) for the Kiwis in the Athlete’s Village is really inspirational.
The four times Commonwealth Games veteran said the atmosphere in the Athlete’s Village is always motivating and very special for athletes to be part of.
“It’s one of my highlights, I really enjoy it. It’s a bit of a bubble - you drop your washing off and you get it back, you walk into the food hall and get what you need to eat,” said Couzins.
“But the real highlight for me is the New Zealand lounge which is just a marquee with televisions and bean bags and cushions – it’s really simple, but yesterday I watched Sam Webster win his gold medal with 20-30 other Kiwis, it’s really exciting and it does make you feel really proud.”
Couzins said to be watching other Kiwis succeed helps inspire others to perform in their respective events.
“You watch performances like Sam’s and it definitely makes you stop and think it would be good to be collecting a medal at the end of this – ultimately, that’s what’s in front of us and that’s what we are here to do.”
The NZOC has set up high performance recovery areas and facilities such as massage rooms and ice baths inside the New Zealand living quarters to provide athletes with good access at the times they need it.
Hockey New Zealand Media release
England U21 Men win bronze
England U21 Men v Belgium, July 26 2014 - credit Frank Uijlenbroek
England Under-21 Men secured a dramatic bronze medal in the EuroHockey Junior Nations Championship in Belgium on Saturday afternoon, beating the hosts 4-3 after scoring a goal in the last second the force a shoot-out.
With time ticking down, England were awarded a penalty corner which was scored with a straight flick by Luke Taylor to send the game into a shoot-out. Goals from Taylor, David Goodfield, Sam French and finally Ed Horler helped England win 4-3.
“I’m absolutely delighted that we’ve got a bronze medal after so long,” said Head Coach Jon Bleby. “We thoroughly dominated the game and deserved to win.”
Against the run of play Belgium took the lead after 20 minutes when Tom de Groote scored from a rebound after the initial shot had been well saved, but England battled on and continued to cause problems for the hosts.
England launched a lot of attacks at their rivals, who sat back and defended before launching counter attacks.
It looked like their solitary goal would prove decisive, but England took their goalkeeper off with two and a half minutes remaining in place of a kicking back, and on the stroke of the hooter David Goodfield penetrated the circle before the ball hit a Belgian foot.
From the resulting penalty corner, Luke Taylor scored in overtime to force the shootout, and England held their nerve to take the win.
England Hockey Board Media release
Bronze joy for England U21 Women
England U21 Women v Spain, July 26 2014 - credit Frank Uijlenbroek
A goal in each half by Clifton’s Jo Leigh helped England secure bronze with a 2-0 victory over Spain at the EuroHockey Junior Nations Championship on Saturday afternoon.
England edged the first half in terms of dominance, but didn’t take the lead until the 31st minute. At a penalty corner Emma Trunks fired into the D, where Jo Leigh scored with the rebound.
Spain provided a more stern test in the second half, and created more chances with four penalty corners after the break to England’s one. But the English defence held firm, and it was Leigh again who scored three minutes from the end.
Play came down the left side, where Hannah Martin crossed into the D for Leigh to deflect home on the reverse stick into the bottom right corner of the net.
Head Coach Kevin Johnson said: “It was really pleasing to see the turnaround in performance from our semi final to the game today.
“Our executions, basics and commitment to the game plan was first class throughout, and as a result we put together a highly professional performance. We are thrilled to pick up the bronze medal.”
England Hockey Board Media release
EG looking for first Dutch scalp
East Grinstead manager Matt Jones has told local media his side is relishing the opportunity of taking on the Netherlands' SV Kampong and Russia's Dinamo Stroitel in the group stages of the 2014/15 Euro Hockey League.
The English side have yet to beat a Dutch side in Europe but Jones, speaking to the East Grinstead Courier, believes this could be his side's chance when they meet in October.
"We always knew that we could face one of the big sides in round one and it doesn't come much bigger than Kampong," he said.
"They are flying high in the Dutch league and are a star-studded outfit, but this is what we have come to expect at this level and that is what you want to have.
"It is a perfect opportunity for us to put down a big marker and prove how capable East Grinstead and English sides are.
"It is a big target for us to beat a Dutch side in the Euro Hockey League and this is something we will relish."
Euro Hockey League media release
Daring strengthen for EHL debut
Euro Hockey League newcomers Royal Daring have moved quickly to strengthen their panel ahead of their debut in the competition this October in Barcelona with six new players added to their roster.
Local boys Tom Beirnaert, Julien Louis, Alaric Dayal and Maxime Saussez have been joined most recently by Inaki Alvarez and Théophile Ponthieu.
Alvarez, a 27-year-old Argentine, arrives from Universitario de Rosario while he also has experience of the Spanish top tier where he played in the 2008-2009 season.
Ponthieu, meanwhile, is a 20-year-old French player who played with their World Cup silver medal winning side in Delhi in 2013 and will form part of Daring's attacking options when he joins up with the panel after this week's U-21 Euros in Waterloo.
Euro Hockey League media release