Report provided by Scottish Hockey
On day four of the men’s Hockey World League Round 1 event in Glasgow (SCO), Scotland and Wales sealed their respective places in HWL Round 2 with impressive victories.
Scotland ensured qualification with another sensational high-scoring win at Glasgow’s National Hockey Centre. Their 9-0 win over Portugal means the Scots have scored 25 goals in their three games, with three clean sheets.
Scotland got off to a great start when Alan Forsyth opened the scoring when he shot through the goalkeeper’s legs from close range on four minutes.
From that point onwards, Portugal became tricky opponents for the Scots. The game was scrappy and the physicality of the Portuguese broke up the slick Scots play that has been a feature of the tournament so far. The only real opportunity for Scotland was a Hamish Imrie shot, which was well saved by Andre Romariz for Portugal.
As half time approached Scotland stepped up a gear. The ball found its way out to Kenny Bain wide left and he zipped it in for Ed Greaves arriving at the near post to glance the ball into the net. 2-0.
The comforting third goal came for Scotland three minutes later. Russell Anderson slipped the ball into the D for Imrie who was wide left. Imrie showed good stick skills to go past two defenders before shooting. The shot was saved but Alan Forsyth was able to bounce the ball then smash it into the corner to make it 3-0 on half time.
Scotland emerged for the second half full of fire and almost immediately scored a fourth goal. Bain blasted it in from out wide for Imrie to tap into the net to make it 4-0.
Bain was again the provider provider for Scotland’s fifth, thrusting the ball towards the far post with Cameron Fraser tapping the ball home.
Bain helped himself to a goal as the half progressed. On the break Bain fired home a deadly finish across the goalkeeper from the edge of the D. 6-0.
Scotland’s seventh goal found Lee Morton arrive at the far post to tap in to make it 7-0. Duncan Riddell added his name to the scoresheet when he scored on the break to make it 8-0. A Bain tap in secured his second of the game and Scotland’s ninth. Bain was to be denied a hat trick in the closing stages when he had a penalty flick saved at the top corner. Despite sustained pressure for the final minutes of the game the score remained 9-0.
Wales also ensured qualification for Hockey World League Round 2 with a fantastic high-scoring win over Slovakia.
James Carson of Wales opened the first half by smashing the ball into the net for wales’ first goal of the game just 11 minutes in.
Shortly after Owain Dolan-Grey scored a great goal for the Welsh making it 2-0. Wales were in complete control; completely dominating the first half and playing some very good hockey. They continued their run of goals when Rupert Shipperley scored making it 3-0 for Wales.
Wales scored a fourth when Benjamin Francis scored from the right hand side with a hard and fast shot to the left hand corner of the net making it 4-0. Then 27 minutes into the first half and James Carson scored his second goal of the game making it a 5-0.
Slovakia battled back and had an opportunity to score from a penalty corner but missed with Wales then taking control of the ball again. Wales ended the comfortable first half well in front and easing towards qualification. Slovakia attempted to throw a spanner in the works in the second half. Zdenko Kovacevic opened the second half of the game with their first goal making it 5-1 to Wales.
The Slovak goal prompted Wales to step up a gear. First Lewis Prosser had a near miss when he fired towards the right hand of the net, it ended up just wide. Then Benjamin Francis scored for Wales with a hard direct hit to the net to bag his second goal of the game making it 6-1 to Wales.
Wales were given a penalty corner and Daniel Kyriakides scored to give Wales a 7-1 lead with only 19 minutes to go. Soon after, Gareth Furlong followed suit by scoring for wales and bringing the Welsh side to a 8-1 lead.
Wales had another penalty corner with Benjamin Francis scoring his third goal of the game for a 9-1 lead over the Slovakian side. On full time Francis struck another goal making it 10-1 for Wales with his fourth goal of the game. Scotland and Wales play each other on Sunday in their final game in World League 1 in Glasgow to find out who will win the group.
Away from the field, the Scotland team have taken over FIH’s Instagram and Snapchat accounts for a while, so be sure to check out their posts from behind the scenes in Glasgow!
Photo: Scottish Hockey