Pakistan captain Zeeshan Ashraf agreed that defensive lapses let his team down against England in the hockey World Cup on Thursday.

“We made some mistakes in the defence. Besides, there were two yellow cards which made matters worse for us,” he said following his team's 5-2 loss.

“In the first half England played well. We tried to come back in the second half but conceded a few goals in our attempt to attack.”

On the rough exchange between England's Ian Mackay and Irfan, Zeeshan said, “he deliberately hit Irfan. The Tournament Director should ban him like Shivendra.”

The Pakistani skipper said his team still had a chance to make the semifinals.

Enjoying crowd support

Zeeshan's English counterpart Barry Middleton said his side enjoyed the crowd support. He said his team would miss the services of experienced striker Richard Mantell, who dislocated his right ankle during the match and was ruled out for the rest of the tournament.

Ric Charlesworth said before the match Australia was worried about the South Africans. “But I liked the way our team played well throughout, they were relentless. If we improve everyday, we will be at a place where we want to be at the end of the tournament,” said the Australian coach.

Charlesworth defended the rotation of captaincy. “We have a few players with leadership abilities. We are rotating them. All have something to offer, all have some positive qualities,” he said.

Record margin

On the record margin of victory, the Aussie coach said he had no idea about it. “Is it? Nobody thinks about it.

“We had 25-30 shots at the goal today. Sometimes the scores are unfair. We have to make hay when the sun shines. The goals might make a difference at the end,” Charlesworth said.

South African captain Austin Smith was disappointed with his side's showing.

“We have the potential to compete against a team like Australia. However, 12-0 is certainly not the score. Our seniors were not up to the mark, no one stood up and took charge,” he said.

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