12,000 people turned up to watch Saturday's action at the BDO FIH Hockey World Cup in Rosario, Argentina, with the host nation and England sealing their places in the Semi Finals with victories in Pool B.
England were first to take to the field today, claiming a 2-1 win over a competative South Africa team. Midfield star Helen RICHARDSON netted twice before South Africa's Pietee COETZEE scored a penalty corner which made for a tense final ten minutes.
The victory for England put pressure on Korea to record a result against Spain, needing a win to keep alive their chances of reaching the Semi Finals. However, the two teams played out a thrilling 2-2 draw, which put Argentina and England through to the Semi Final stages.
The final match of the day witnessed a pulsating atmosphere as Argentina defeated China 2-0. The game was marked by a sensational individual goal from Luciana AYMAR, which she later described as the greatest of her career.
More information about these matches can be found below.
On Day 8 the action reverts back to Pool A, with Japan & India taking to the field at 14.30 (local time: GMT -3) before Germany & The Netherlands face each other in a battle of the European giants (17.00). The final match of the day will be the meeting of neighbours Australia and New Zealand at 19.30.
for more about the BDO FIH Hockey World Cup, visit: http://www.bdofihworldcup2010.sportcentric.com
Aymar inspires Argentina to triumph over China
Luciana AYMAR thrilled a roaring 12,000 crowd with an absolutely stunning individual goal to make it four wins out of four here at the BDO FIH Hockey World Cup in Rosario, Argentina. Noel BARRIONUEVO scored the opener in the second half before AYMAR beat four players down the left before sliding the ball underneath the China goalkeeper to seal a 2-0 win. The result means that Argentina stay ahead of England in Pool B, though both sides have already qualified for the Semi Final stages thanks to results earlier in the day.
The atmosphere in the venue was nothing short of electrifying, with the sell-out crowd cheering loudly from the moment that the two teams emerged onto the field. Every Argentinean touch of the ball was greeted by excited cheers, as the fans got behind their team. However, China frustrated the host nation for the majority of the first half, stopping their opponents scoring before the break.
Argentina stepped up their game in the second half, with Luciana AYMAR at the heart of much of their great attacking work. Las Leonas opened the scoring in the 51st minute of the game when Noel BARRIONUEVO sent a penalty corner flick just inside the right post of the China goal, sparking wild celebrations from the delighted spectators before AYMAR's moment of genius sealed the victory in the 60th minute.
In the post match press conference, Luciana AYMAR described her incredible strike as the greatest goal of her career, while team coach Carlos RETEGUI also spoke of his admiration for his star player.
Match 21 - China v Argentina 0-2
> Las Leonas are the first team to claim four victories at the 2010 World Cup.
> Argentina progress to the World Cup semi-finals for the seventh time and for the fourth time in succession.
> Noel Barrionuevo scored her 4th PC goal at Rosario 2010. At the 2010 Champions Trophy Barrionuevo scored eight penalty corner goals.
> Luciana Aymar is now on 8 World Cup career goals in 4 World Cup tournaments. Four of these goals were scored at Rosario 2010.
> Argentina have now won their last 8 competitive matches, since drawing 2-2 with Germany at the 2010 Champions Trophy.
> Argentina have conceded only two goals in four matches at Rosario 2010.
> With 3 points from 4 matches China are fourth in Pool B, leading South Africa on goal difference.
England & Argentina reach Semis as Korea & Spain draw
England and Argentina have been confirmed as the two Semi Finalists from Pool B after Korea and Spain could only draw. It was a fantastically enjoyable game for the sell-out crowd of 12,000, although for Korea the result means that they could no longer mathmatically qualify for the tournament Semi Finals.
KIM Bo-Mi scored her first goal in World Cup competiton inside the ten minute mark when she completed a long run with an wonderful finish high into the net to give Korea the lead. The Asians dominated the possession for the majority of the first half, but that did not stop Spain from levelling the scores in the 31st minute when Gloria COMERMA smashed home a ferocious a penalty corner strike. However, Korea regained the upper hand when CHEON Seul-Ki launched an unstoppable penalty corner into the net to give her side the lead at the break.
The fantastic, end-to-end match continued well into second half, as both teams desperately searched for an early goal. Spain drew level once again when Silvia MUNOZ's stunning reverse stick deflection flew into the net from close range. It proved to be the last goal of the game, but both Korea and Spain had great chances to win the match in the last ten minutes.
Match 20 - Korea v Spain 2-2
> England are the first team to qualify for the semi-finals at Rosario 2010, following’s Korea’s 2-2 draw with Spain.
> This is England’s second World Cup semi-final berth and their first since 1990 when they finished fourth.
> Spain won their first point at Rosario 2010, and their first World Cup point since drawing with England in their last pool match at the 2006 World Cup.
> Both Kim Bo-Mi and Cheon Seul-Ki scored their maiden World Cup goal today for Korea.
> Silvia Muñoz (ESP) has now scored at the last three World Cups (2002, 2006 and 2010).
> Gloria Comerma (ESP) scored her second PC goal this tournament; she also converted in the match against England.
Richardson double puts England on verge of Semi Finals
England - bronze medal winners at the recent Champions Trophy in Nottingham - took a giant leap towards claiming a place in the Semi Finals by securing their third win of the tournament, defeating South Africa 2-1. Helen RICHARDSON netted twice to give her side the win, but a strong South Africa surge in the second half saw Pietee COETZEE claim her third goal of the tournament. Despite a brilliant effort from South Africa, England held on to claim all three points in front of a big crowd here in Rosario.
England were certainly the better team in the first half, attacking at will and pinning the South Africa team deep in their own territory for long periods. A number of chances were missed before RICHARDSON's low, powerful shot from the right of the circle hit the bottom left corner of Mariette RIX's goal in the 9th minute. Crista CULLEN had a a couple of penalty corner chances to extend England's advantage, but her low flicks were off target.
South Africa's Star forward Pietee COETZEE had been kept out of the game for great lengths of the first half, but her influence began to grow during the second period as her team-mates began to find her with their passes. However, RICHARDSON - a player who was in stunning form throughout the match - grabbed England's second with a perfectly aimed penalty corner deflection from Crista CULLEN's low flick (48mins). South Africa pulled a goal back when the dangerous COETZEE launched a penalty corner flick inside Beth STORRY's right post (58mins). The crowd sensed that South Africa could perform a rescue act and began to support their every touch of the ball. However, the England defence held strong to claim all three points and move a step nearer to reaching the last four.
The win moved England to the top of the table ahead of the two remaining Pool B matches that take place later today.
Match 19 - England v South Africa 2-1
> England are still unbeaten after four matches at Rosario 2010 (3 wins - 1 draw).
> If Korea fail to beat Spain later today, England progress to the semi-finals.
> Helen Richardson (ENG) has now scored in back-to-back games, she also scored in the match against Korea.
> This is the first time Richardson scored twice in World Cup match in three World Cup participations.
> Pietie Coetzee (RSA) scored her third PC goal this tournament. At the 2002 World Cup she also netted against England.
> Lisa-Marie Deetlefs (RSA) is the first to collect 2 yellow cards this tournament.
> England converted 1 of 6 penalty corners today.
> South Africa scored 1 of 3 penalty corners in today’s match.
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