Great Britain women got off to a winning start at the Cordoba Four Nations tournament on Wednesday evening, recording a deserved 3-1 win over Korea.
Victory was assured thanks to goals from Leicester pair Crista Cullen and Rebecca Herbert, and newly crowned Hockey Writers’ Club Player of the Year Alex Danson of Reading.
The tournament, which is being played as a preparatory event ahead of the Champions Trophy in Rosario beginning a week on Saturday, features Great Britain, Korea, hosts Argentina and New Zealand, the Commonwealth silver medallists.
Great Britain showed good patience to recover from an early Korean goal – a third minute penalty from drag flick taker Eun Ji Cho – through their own penalty corner specialist, Leicester defender Cullen. Shortly after Cullen’s strike Slough’s Nicola White played her part deep in British territory as she saved a goal-bound effort on her own goal line, knocking the ball into the air before clearing.
Five minutes into the second half Great Britain took the lead from another Leicester player as Channel Islander Rebecca Herbert unleashed a reverse stick shot to put Great Britain 2-1 up. And Hampshire born Reading forward Danson, who was also named Reading Sports Personality of the Year this week, made it 3-1 midway through the second half with a deft deflection that rolled across the line.
Despite playing the last five minutes with ten players following a yellow card for Canterbury’s Natalie Seymour Great Britain remained firmly in control to wrap up victory.
Afterwards, Head Coach Danny Kerry expressed his pleasure at how Great Britain started the tournament and singled out Helen Richardson, Reading’s FIH All Star, for particular praise: “The first half was very stretched and although we had the better of the chances I thought 1-1 was a fair reflection of the game at that stage. In the second half we took really good control of the game and created good opportunities. I’m pleased with the result. I thought Helen Richardson was outstanding in the middle of the park in the second half.”
Great Britain’s next fixture is against hosts and world number two side Argentina on Thursday night.
Source: Great Britain Hockey media release
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