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Hockey - 14. August 2008.

England def New zealand in Beijing

TODAY’S RESULTS

Women’s Pool A:

China 0 (0) – 1 (1) Netherlands

Spain 2 (2) – 1 (0) Korea

South Africa 0 (0) – 3 (1) Australia


Women’s Pool B:

USA 2 (1) – 4 (1) Germany

Japan 1 (0) – 2 (0) Argentina

NEW ZEALAND 1 (1) – 2 (1) GREAT BRITAIN

England def New zealand in Beijing

Great Britain's Charlotte Craddock and New Zealand's Kate Saunders
battle for the ball in the third match of the Olympic Games, 14 August
2008/photo Grant Treeby



NEW ZEALAND
1 (1)

Gemma Flynn 29 (PC)

GREAT BRITAIN 2 (1)

Alex Danson 31 (F)

Crista Cullen 50 (PC)


Great Britain’s women earned their first victory of the 2008 Olympic Games by overcoming New Zealand 2-1 in a close contest. With only one place separating these sides in the world rankings, it was inevitable that the odd goal would decide the game.


Beth Storry made a number of good saves throughout to deny the Blacksticks, the first of which came in the 8th minute when a mistake by captain Kate Walsh allowed Niniwa Roberts a shot on goal, but Storry made a good save to prevent New Zealand opening their account.


The next opportunity did not come until the 17th minute when Great Britain were awarded a penalty corner, but Crista Cullen’s shot was easily saved by Beth Jurgeleit.


New Zealand were first to get on the scoreboard from a 29th minute penalty corner taken by Stacey Carr. Lizzy Igasan’s original shot was deflected by Anne Panter towards a watching and waiting Gemma Flynn who fired home in a diving motion to make it 1-0 to the Blacksticks.


Britain’s reply was almost immediate and came two minutes later when Lucilla Wright dribbled the ball into the circle from a Helen Richardson pass. Wright stumbled as she entered the circle, but recovered well and fed the ball across to Charlotte Craddock, who deflected the ball upwards towards a centrally placed Alex Danson who kept a cool head to direct the ball into the back of the net.


With 26 seconds left on the clock before half-time, Great Britain won another penalty corner from which they were convinced they had scored, but the umpire controversially ruled out Panter’s goal to leave it even-stevens at the break.


However, 15 minutes into the second half, Great Britain successfully converted a what turned out to be the deciding penalty corner with a well-worked routine which saw the ball pushed out by Panter to the top of the circle where Mel Clewlow feigned to strike, but the ball was crossed to Cullen who launched a powerful shot into the back of the net.


Great Britain move up to fourth in the table on the same number of points as third placed Japan and are in with a chance of making the semi-finals. If they overcome Japan and the USA in their final two pool matches and Germany do as expected against Argentina (Saturday) and Japan (Monday), the Brits will make the final four.





PREVIOUS OLYMPIC ENCOUNTERS

2 August 1992, Terrassa, Great Britain 3 – 2 New Zealand



CURRENT TABLES

Women’s Pool A:

Australia: Pld 3, Pts 9

Netherlands: Pld 3, Pts 9

China: Pld 3, Pts 6

Spain: Pld 3, Pts 3

Korea: Pld 3, Pts 0

South Africa: Pld 3, Pts 0


Women’s Pool B:

Germany: Pld 3, Pts 9

Argentina: Pld 3, Pts 5

Japan: Pld 3, Pts 4

Great Britain: Pld 3, Pts 4

USA: Pld 3, Pts 1

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