England and India secured their place in the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games Semi Finals with 3-1 and 5-2 wins over Canada and South Africa respectively, while Australia and New Zealand won their respective matches to confirm their top places in Pool A and Pool B.
After today’s results, India will now face New Zealand and England will be up against Australia in cross over Semi Finals to be played on Saturday at 1645 and 1430 IST respectively. (Full Schedule, Results and Points Table Here)
Indian team came out firing in their final pool game against South Africa, though they needed a draw for advancing to medal round. VR Raghunath and Rupinder Pal Singh converted 2 of their 3 penalty corner chances in 3rd and 9th minute of the game to put India in driving position with 2-0 lead within opening 10 minutes.
India made full use of video referral when they got a goal reversed, as ball had taken back side of South African player, who had found the target in 11th minute. Ten minutes later Ramandeep Singh fired home India’s third goal and SV Sunil made 4-0 in 26th minute. And India went into lemon with the cushion four goals.
After the change of ends, South Africa scored one though Paton in 42nd minute to reduce the margin to 1 goal to 4 goals. Rupinder Pal’s effort on India’s penalty corner in 45th minutes well saved by South African goalkeeper Pieterse, and they earned a penalty corner on the other end on counter attack. Austin Smith scored the 2nd goal of South Africa in 47th through a wonderful flick on the penalty corner to get his team back in the game.
After conceding two goals within 12 minutes of 2nd half, Indian team pushed up the game and then came a period where yellow cards showered. At the time of numerical advantage, 10 on 9, Manpreet Singh beautifully dived to convert a cross to make it 5-2 and took away the game and Semi-Finals place. Though South Africa tried hard in remaining 13 minutes or so but could not pull out any special performance.
Barring a seven-goal defeat, England were always going to qualify for the final four but they made light work of seeing off the Canadians in their final group game at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. Ashley Jackson opened the scoring before the break, cleverly diverting in Barry Middleton’s driven cross and skipper Middleton then added a second immediately after half-time in the 36th minute.
Jackson added his second and England’s third halfway through the second period to take his tally for the tournament to seven and move him three goals clear at the top of the goal scorer table. England goalkeeper George Pinner saw his clean-sheet ruined at the death however as Scott Tupper bagged a consolation for the Canadians from a penalty corner.
England will be looking to improve on their last encounter with the defending CWG champions and current World Champions Kookaburras who put five past them without reply in the group stages at the World Cup back in June.
England Captain Barry Middleton, said on semi-final clash with Australia, “It should be fun (playing against Australia), that’s who you want to play in big tournaments. We have set our stall out over the last few years that we want to be in the big games and be in semi-finals. We are consistently making semi-finals with this group of players but we will go out there, give as good as we get and we have belief in the team that we can beat anyone on our day.”
Australia’s men’s hockey team confirmed their status as Pool A winners at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games with a 5-0 victory over host nation Scotland.
Two goals in as many first half minutes from Matt Gohdes helped the Australian men to victory as he added quickly to Chris Ciriello’s opener. An early second half strike from Kieran Govers and Jake Whetton’s deflected goal soon after completed the five goal haul in a match in which Scotland goalkeeper Jamie Cachia had to be at his sharpest to repel a series of Australian strikes.
While the result maintains Australia’s 100% record in Glasgow, Australian co-coach Paul Gaudoin said afterwards he believes his side needs to perform better in the final four showdown.
“We’re happy we’re in the semi-finals,” he said, before admitting, “We’ve got some work to do. Our skill execution today was below par, I think. We’re going to need to be better in the semi-final against England.”
The victories keep rolling in for New Zealand’s hockey teams at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games with the men winning 6-1 against Malaysia and cementing their top of the pool position.
In the game, world-class drag flicker Andy Hayward got the side off the mark with a penalty corner conversion inside the first five minutes. Although the Kiwis dominated the game, it took 20 minutes to double their advantage when Bradley Shaw drove into the circle to smack it past the Malaysian goalkeeper giving the Kiwis a 2-0 lead at half time.
New Zealand pulled away in the second half, scoring back to back goals through Nick Haig, scoring on his 150th appearance, and Hugo Inglis who capitalised on a poor clearance from Malaysia. Another Hayward drag flick extended the lead to five goals before Shea McAleese added another after some clever play from Simon Child along the baseline. Malaysia managed a late consolation goal through captain Muhammed Razie Bin Abd Rahim, with the full time score 6-1.