Hockey

India unable to keep pace with Australia

Low temperatures and high winds did nothing to stop the flow of 22 goals in three matches in Pool A of the women's field hockey World Cup here on Wednesday.

Australia beat India 6-3, the Netherlands gave New Zealand a 7-3 hockey lesson and Germany defeated Japan 2-1.

Australia coach Frank Murray agreed Australia put in a poor performance against India “We realise we are not playing well enough in this tournament but I am happy we have the win today,” Murray said.

Madonna Blyth put Australia on the board first and India's 15-year-old Rani Rampal scored India's first equaliser.

Ashleigh Nelson scrambled in a rebound off a penalty corner to give Australia a 2-1 lead a minute before the break. Ritu Rani was on the end of a long pass into the circle to make a deflection for India's second equaliser at 2-2 early in the second half.

Taking the game away

Australia took the game away from India at 5-2 with three goals in six minutes by Casey Eastham, a penalty corner by Nicole Arrold and Nelson's second goal.

Rampal drove in her second goal for India and Shelley Liddelow slapped in Australia's sixth goal in the last 10 minutes.

Murray praised his team's reaction when Aussie skipper Madonna Blyth was injured.

“When Madonna was hurt and had to come off the field, Casey Eastham stepped up and made a big difference and some of our other young players have also stepped up and have made a difference to the team,” Murray said.

India coach Sandeep Somesh sees progress being made by India.

“I am obviously not happy with the result but I think we played a better game today compared to the first game and hopefully we can look at upsetting a couple of teams in the next few games, and see where that takes us,” Somesh said.

Krystal's 100th cap

Krystal Forgesson celebrated her 100th cap by scoring in the second minute and went on to score all three New Zealand goals.

Ellen Hoog scored for the Dutch within the minute and Kim Lammers put the Netherlands ahead 2-1 in the middle of the first half.

Kiwi pride kept the Netherlands at bay until after the break when the Dutch scored three goals in the first four minutes of the second half with Katie Glynn under suspension for New Zealand.

Goals by Marilyn Agliotti, Maartje Paumen's penalty corner conversion and Michelle van der Pols sank New Zealand to 5-1. Janneke Schopman and Ellen Hoog added to New Zealand's troubles at 7-1.

Forgesson clawed back two late goals for the Blacksticks — a field goal deflection of Charlotte Harrison's cross and a penalty stroke in the last seconds of play.

New Zealand coach Mark Hager conceded New Zealand had been taught hockey lessons by the Dutch.

“We got a lot of hockey lessons today from a very good team that is playing very sharp hockey,” Hager said.

Second win

Germany gained its second win in a tough match against Japan. Germany defended tenaciously in the scoreless first half as Japan took the match to it.

Ai Murakami's penalty corner conversion for Japan had Germany playing catch-up, achieved by stepping up in the midfield to give its strikers more chances.

Maike Stoeckel's reverse-flick from an acute angle made the equaliser and Natascha Keller made a scorching drive under pressure for the 2-1 winner.

Intensive game

“It was a very intensive game for all of us and we defended very well in the first half and we were still fighting to win after we went down a goal in the second half,” Germany coach Michael Behrmann said.

Japan coach Zenjiro Yasuda was pleased with the level of his teams play. “Japan is playing at the standard I expect of them and I was surprised we could dominate the first half against Germany as they are a much more advanced team than Japan,” Yasuda said.

The results: Australia 6 (Blyth 17, Nelson 34, 58, Eastham 52, Arrold 55, Liddelow 64) bt India 3 (Rampal 30, 62, Rani 42).

The Netherlands 7 (Hoog 3, 60, Lammers 16, Agliotti 36, Paumen 38, Pols 39, Schopman 49) bt New Zealand 3 (Forgesson 2, 65,70).

Germany 2 (Stoeckel 57, Keller 61) bt Japan 1 (Murakami 39).

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Printable version | Mar 29, 2020 3:41:06 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/hockey/India-unable-to-keep-pace-with-Australia/article15900301.ece

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