England’s women suffered their first defeat of the Commonwealth Games tournament on Friday as they went down 4-1 to a Katie Glynn inspired New Zealand team. Despite taking the lead through Ashleigh Ball’s first international goal, England conceded twice before half time and suffered a double blow as they lost Helen Richardson to a yellow card with Glynn scoring her second and third goals from close range while Richardson was off.
The result gives Saturday’s final pool against Malaysia added significance with the Malaysians in with a chance of reaching the semis if they can overcome England.
After an opening spell that saw both teams with periods of midfield possession first blood went to England when Slough’s Ashleigh Ball got on the end of a cross from club teammate Nicola White to score her first goal for England.
The goal seemed to settle England who created a couple of half chances, most notably to a diving Kerry Williams on her 50th appearance for England, before New Zealand came back with renewed impetus.
An error at the back allowed the Blacksticks to equalise in the 24th minute when a cross from the English left was allowed to roll right through the circle to where New Zealand’s Samantha Harrison was running in at the back post. England goalkeeper Beth Storry dived to block the shot but not even a last gasp attempt by Canterbury’s Natalie Seymour could prevent the ball from crossing the line.
Storry did well to deflect New Zealand’s only penalty corner of the half to safety, diving low to her right and losing her left glove as a result of the force of the strike from Katie Glynn.
Less than a minute before the break England fell behind to a well struck shot from Glynn who picked up the ball in behind the defence and ran across the top of the circle before unleashing a shot on the move to make it 2-1.
Seconds before the hooter sounded for half time England were awarded a penalty corner but Crista Cullen, who had been suffering from illness for the previous 24 hours, put the flick wide.
England’s second half began brightly with Cannock’s Charlotte Craddock latching onto a loose ball at the top of the New Zealand circle only to see goalkeeper come out to block with her legs.
After Helen Richardson was shown a yellow card with 20 minutes to go, the dynamic changed as New Zealand made their numerical advantage count to extend their lead to 4-1. Both goals came from the stick of Katie Glynn as the 21 year old completed her hat-trick with two goals from close range. The first was a low reverse stick effort after she had driven in from the wing while her hat-trick goal was volleyed in from a cut back.
The goals killed off the match as a contest and afterwards England Head Coach Danny Kerry said New Zealand were worthy winners.
“New Zealand were better than us everywhere and they deserved their win. The first two goals were very poor from our perspective; that’s not where we’re at. When we were short with a player off the pitch they got their goals. We had too many people off their game today.”
England now face Malaysia in their final pool match with both teams fully aware that the victor will progress to the semi finals. That match takes place at 9:30am local time on Saturday.
All official tournament information including match sheets, starting line-ups, tables and scorers can be found on the Commonwealth Games Results Website by clicking here.
NEW ZEALAND 4 (2)
Samantha Harrison 25 (F)
Katie Glynn 35,51,54 (F,F,F)
ENGLAND 1 (1)
Ashleigh Ball 14 (F)
Source: England Hockey
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