Owen G Glenn Champions Trophy Auckland 2011
Auckland, New Zealand - December 3 - 11, 2011

GBR V PAK ( Pool A, Pool D ) Owen G Glenn Champions Trophy Auckland 2011

2 - 1

Match Review GBR - PAK 2-1

Mantell late show sinks Pakistan
Great Britain 2-1 Pakistan

Great Britain made a solid start to their Owen G Glenn FIH Champions Trophy campaign by recording a 2-1 win over Pakistan in Auckland, New Zealand.

Pakistan went into half time with a 1-0 lead thanks an expertly dispatched penalty corner flick from Muhammad Imran, but Great Britain hit back shortly after the break when 34-year-old Mark Pearn scored his first Champions Trophy goal in ten years. The winning goal came from the stick of Simon Mantell, who volleyed home a penalty corner from close range with just five minutes of the match remaining.

The result puts the Brits level on points with Australia, who were winners in the first match of the day against Spain. Great Britain will look to continue their winning ways when the face Australia on Sunday, while Pakistan will take on a Spain side that was narrowly defeated by the Kookaburras earlier in the day.

The first half of the match was played at breakneck speed, with the action switching rapidly from one end to the other. Both sides saw early penalty corner efforts sail wide of the target, with Pakistan’s Muhammad Imran and Mark Gleghorne also going close with set piece efforts.

Pakistan took the lead with five minutes remaining in the first half. With legendary drag-flicker Sohail Abbas not on the field, the opportunity to flick at goal was given once again to Muhammad Imran who found the bottom left corner with a ferocious effort.

Great Britain almost found an equalizer before the break when 2009 FIH Young Player of the Year Ashley Jackson sent a penalty corner drag-flick arcing towards the top corner, but a solid save from Salman Akbar ensured that Pakistan would go into half time with their 1-0 lead very much intact.

The British team started the second half in fine form, and it seemed only a matter of time before they would pull themselves level. The equalizer arrived in the 42nd minute when Mark Pearn – a player who recently returned to international competition after a six year absence – found the goal from the tightest of angles. Although Pearn was the scorer, his goal was created by some superb build-up play by Jackson and 2010 FIH All Star Barry Middleton.

Pakistan’s best chance of the second half arrived in the 62nd minute of the game when Abdul Haseem Khan turned inside his marker  and entered the circle, but his powerful reverse stick shot sailed fractionally over the crossbar.

The winning goal arrived in the 66th minute thanks to a penalty corner conversion from Simon Mantell. Although Mantell’s initial effort from the top of the circle was blocked, the striker was on hand to volley in from close range following a perfect pass from Ashley Jackson. The win will give Great Britain great confidence ahead of Sunday’s meeting with world champions Australia.   

  • Match 02
  • Date Sat, 3 Dec 2011
  • Time 14:05
  • Pool/Class Pool A, Pool D
  • Venue

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