|June 29th, 2013|
|4||Pool B||9:00pm||ENG - RSA||3 - 3 (1 - 2)||Final||x 2|
England - South Africa 3-3 (1-2)
England were held to a 3-3 draw by South Africa in the final match of the day here at the men’s Hockey World League Semi Final in Johor Bahru. A 70th minute penalty corner from Richard Smith gave England a point in a match that they had trailed in for long periods. The result means that all four teams in Pool B are level on one point each.
South Africa drew first blood as early as the 6th minute in the contest when a speculative cross-field pass from the left somehow found its way to the unmarked Julian Hykes, who turned smartly before lashing a thunderbolt finish past goalkeeper George Pinner. It was a brilliant strike from the South African, who smashed his effort into the smallest of targets, giving the England shot-stopper absolutely no chance of making the save.
Hykes doubled the South African advantage five minutes later when he cut along the backline caught Pinner off guard with a snap-shot which ricocheted off the keeper’s pads and into the roof of the net. South Africa were well on top, but England managed to reduce the deficit in the 13th minute through an own goal. Lance Louw was the unfortunate player, who inadvertently guided a cross from the right beyond the despairing dive of RSA keeper Erasmus Pieterse.
The remainder of the half was a battle royale, with both sides giving everything to the cause but making a number of unforced errors on an extremely humid Malaysian evening.
It was England who scored the first goal after half time, with Ben Arnold forcing the ball home after a Mark Gleghorne burst away from the South African defenders before teeing up his compatriot with a perfectly weighted pass.
Both teams lost players in the 63rd minute for separate offences, with South Africa’s Lloyd Norris-Jones and Henry Weir of England being shown yellow cards. South Africa took advantage of the extra space and moved into a 3-2 lead thanks to a slick penalty corner routine converted by Tim Drummond, who guided a deflection into the roof of the net following a superb pass from captain Austin Smith. However, England grabbed a share of the spoils with a penalty corner of their own, with Richard Smith finding the bottom left corner with a powerful drag-flick in the last minute of the game.
|June 29th, 2013 at 8:23 am||JOHOR: ENG 0-2 RSA - Pulsating start to this game, with RSA's Julian Hykes scoring twice inside the first 10 minutes. Incredible stuff|
|June 29th, 2013 at 8:25 am||JOHOR: ENG 1-2 RSA - England pull a goal back with what looks like an own goal, with Lance Louw getting an unfortunate touch|
|June 29th, 2013 at 8:40 am||JOHOR: ENG 1-2 RSA - South Africa are looking strong here, with England struggling to create any decent scoring opportunities|
|June 29th, 2013 at 8:41 am||JOHOR: ENG 1-2 RSA - South Africa win a Penalty Corner ahead of the half time break. Will they get the goal?|
|June 29th, 2013 at 8:42 am||JOHOR: ENG 1-2 RSA - The strike from the top hits the keepers pads and the danger is cleared. A let off for England, there.|
|June 29th, 2013 at 8:46 am||JOHOR: ENG 1-2 RSA - HALF TIME. Two goals from Julian Hykes gives South Africa the advantage at the break.|
|June 29th, 2013 at 9:15 am||JOHOR: ENG 1-2 RSA - 18 minutes left to play in this one, and England are growing in confidence and searching for a leveller|
|June 29th, 2013 at 9:21 am||JOHOR: ENG 2-2 RSA - There it is! Mark Gleghorne passes around the keeper to Ben Arnold who guides the ball home. 13 mins remain.|
|June 29th, 2013 at 9:34 am||JOHOR: ENG 3-3 RSA - Incredible! Richard Smith scores a PC in the last minute to tie the scores. A 4th draw of the day?|
|June 29th, 2013 at 9:35 am||JOHOR: ENG 3-3 RSA - FULL TIME. Yes we are...! Remarkably, all four of today's matches have finished as draws.|