It is day five of the Rabobank Hockey World Cup 2014 in The Hague, Netherlands and the opening game saw Australia edge Belgium in a scrappy 3-2 affair. Anna Flanagan scored her fifth of the tournament on a penalty corner to now lead all women's scorers. Also clashing today are Korea and Japan (14:30 CET), as well as the Netherlands and New Zealand (19:45 CET).
WOMEN Pool A: Belgium v Australia 2-3 (1-1)
Australia made hard work of their 3-2 win over 12th-ranked Belgium in a game that was distinctly lacking in quality from both sides. The Hockeyroos maintain their unbeaten run in this tournament, but with two goals from 14 penalty corners, coach Adam Commens will be concerned that his team are lacking their usual firepower and, more importantly, conceding goals at the other end.
This is the third match that Australia have won 3-2, and tournament top-scorer Anna Flanagan joked as she said: "Why make it convincing, it is far more exciting this way." The drag-flick specialist added that the team has scored nine goals which is three more than their entire Olympic campaign, so they weren't unduly worried.
WOMEN Pool A: Korea v Japan 1-1 (1-0)
The re-match of the Asia Cup final ended with the scores locked together as Asian champions Japan claimed their first point of the tournament with a deserved 1-1 draw against Korea. Goals either side of half time from Korea captain Kim Jongeun and Cherry Blossoms' Shihori Oikawa ensured that the honours were even in the Pool A contest.
WOMEN Pool A: New Zealand v Netherlands 0-2 (0-2)
The Netherlands continued their triumphant domination of pool A with a 2-0 victory over a brave, committed New Zealand side who, despite defending heroically, could not create more than a handful of scoring opportunities. While not the scoreline that the opening few minutes threatened to deliver, this was a game that the women in orange were in control of and opposing teams will have struggled to identify too many chinks in Max Caldas' side.
Women's Pool B action continues tomorrow, 6 June, at Kyocera and Greenfields Stadiums in The Hague, Netherlands. Up first are China and USA (10:30 CET), followed by South Africa and England (14:30 CET), as well as Germany and Argentina (16:00 CET). For schedules, scores, highlights and more visit www.rabobankhockeyworldcup2014.com
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