Germany have claimed their biggest ever win over China by recording a 4-1 success in the Pool D meeting between the two sides in Amstelveen. The Europeans were deserving winners of the contest, with Celine Wilde (2), Maike Stöckel and Marie Mävers all getting their names on the scoresheet, with Gao Lihua registering for China.
The result means that Germany and China will meet again in Sunday’s 7th / 8th Play-Off contest, which subsequently confirms berths for Australia and England in the 5th / 6th Classification match even before they take to the field this afternoon in the final match of Pool D.
There were chances at either end in the early stages of the match, but it was Germany who were the first to capitalize when Celine Wilde opened the scoring in the 8th minute after China failed to clear their lines.
Reigning FIH Young Player of the Year Zhao Yudiao almost pulled her side level when she burst through on goal before crashing a reverse stick shot against the side of the Germany goal. A penalty corner soon followed, but China were unable to take advantage of the set-piece opportunity.
China drew level ion the 18th minute thanks to a tap-in from Gao Lihua, who forced the ball home from close range following excellent build-up play down the right from team captain Li Hongxia.
Although no further goals were scored in the half both sides could easily have gone in ahead at the break. A goal-mouth scramble in China circle was somehow cleared to safety when a goal seemed a certainty, while the hugely influential Zhao continued to cause problems for the Germany defence with her great speed and terrific skill.
Germany re-established their lead five minutes into the second half when Maike Stöckel – who has worn a protective facemask throughout this tournament – pounced on a loose ball in the circle and forced home.
A third Germany goal quickly followed when a slick penalty corner routine saw Julia Müller send a perfect pass to Marie Mävers who had the simple task of deflecting in at the right post.
Germany killed the contest with their fourth goal, which came from the stick of Celine Wilde in the 55th minute, finding the bottom left corner with an instinctive slap-shot.
Although defeated, China will have the chance to avenge the defeat in the 7th / 8th Play-Off match on Sunday.
Review 17. China vs Germany (1-4) - Rabo FIH Champions Trophy 2011
> Germany record their biggest ever win over China in all 29 international matches, by beating them 4-1.
> On Sunday, Germany play China again in the Final 7-8. Australia will play England in the Final 5-6
> Germany have now won 8 of 9 Champions Trophy encounters with China, including the last 6.
> Germany have now won 11 of their last 12 matches against China in all competitions.
> Germany are now on 2 PC goals from 22 penalty corners awarded at the 2011 Champions Trophy.
> China are now on 4 PC goals from 17 attempts at the 2011 Champions Trophy.
> China’s record for most PC goals in a CT tournament is 6 in 2006.
> Germany’s Céline Wilde scored her first two goals in CT competition in today’s match. She is now Germany’s top goalscorer at Amstelveen 2011 on 2 goals.
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