Wednesday, March 10, 2010

England in semi-final

At the Hero Honda FIH World Cup 2010, England booked their ticket for the semi-final by dominating the host India (3-2) in a fiery atmosphere in Delhi, South Africa achieved an historic win over Pakistan (4-3) and Australia rekindled their semi-final chances with a precious win over Spain (2-0).

Game 19 – Australia v. Spain: 2-0 (half-time: 1-0)

In this World Cup, Australia lost their opening game to England (2-3) but came back to beat India (5-2) and South Africa (12-0), while Spain beat South Africa (4-2) and India (5-2) but lost to Pakistan (1-2).

Match Facts (Australia v. Spain):

> Glenn Turner (AUS) netted his fifth goal this tournament, to help Australia well on their way to a ninth successive WC semi-final berth.
> Luke Doerner (AUS) is now on 6 (PC) goals at Delhi 2010, as is Taeke Taekema (NED).
> The Australian record for most goals in a World Cup tournament is 12 by Ian Cooke in 1978 and Jay Stacy in 1998.
> Ramon Alegre became the first Spanish player to be shown a yellow card this tournament.
> Spain who were in the semi-finals in two of the last three WC tournaments (2006 and 1998) will find it extremely hard to reach the last four at Delhi 2010 with six points from four matches.
> Spain failed to convert any of the eight PCs awarded to them in this match.

Game 20 – South Africa v. Pakistan: 4-3 (half-time: 0-1)

South Africa was up to a difficult task in the second match of the day. Having lost their first three encounters against Spain, England and Australia, they were pitted against a Pakistani team with their backs to the wall after losing severely to India (1-4) on opening day then to England (2-5). As in their first two games, South Africa nearly opened the scoring on a penalty-corner in the second minute of play, but it was Rehan BUTT who emerged from a wild scrum in front of Erasmus PIETERSE to score the first goal in the 6th minute.

Match Facts (South Africa v. Pakistan):

> South Africa beat Pakistan 4-3 to end their 10-match winless streak in World Cup competition.
> This is South Africa’s first WC win since 2002 when they beat Belgium 5-4 in the match for 13th place.
> South Africa join Pakistan on three points in Pool B. India are also on three points but they are still to play England tonight.

Game 21 – England v. India: 3-2 (half-time: 1-0)

The marquis match of the day opposed England, still unbeaten in the competition after wins over Australia (3-2), South Africa (6-4) and Pakistan (5-2), to a an Indian outfit that gave hope to their whole country when they opened the World Cup with a decisive victory over arch-rivals Pakistan (4-1), only to fall to Australia (2-5) and Spain (2-5). The pundits were divided in the approach to take (more individual runs? More dribbles one-on-one? More passes?) but the crowd certainly did not worry about these technicalities and was cheering unconditionally for their heroes.

Match Facts (England v. India):

> England beat India 3-2 to become the first team at Delhi 2010 to qualify for the semi-finals.
> England have reached the semi-finals for the second time and for the first time since 1986 when they finished runners-up to Australia.
> England have now won their last 7 WC matches.
> Ashley Jackson’s 42nd minute PC goals marked the 150th goal for England in World Cup competition.
> Jackson has now scored in each of England’s four matches at Delhi 2010.
> India (-4), Pakistan (-6) and South Africa (-15) are all on three points from four matches, with one match to go in Pool B.

Results Day 7 - Saturday 6 March 2010

Australia v. Spain 2:0 (1:0)
AUS 20mn Luke DOERNER (PC) 1:0
AUS 60mn Glenn TURNER (FG) 2:0

South Africa v. Pakistan 4:3 (0:1)
PAK 6mn Rehan BUTT (FG) 0:1
RSA 38mn Gareth CARR (PC) 1:1
RSA 41mn Ian HALEY (FG) 2:1
RSA 46mn Taine PATON (FG) 3:1
RSA 54mn Marvin HARPER (FG) 4:1
PAK 68mn Muhammad IMRAN (PC) 4:2
PAK 70+mn Waseem AHMED (PC) 4:3

England v. India 3:2 (1:0)
ENG 16mn James TINDALL (FG) 1:0
ENG 42mn Ashley JACKSON (PC) 2:0
ENG 47mn Ashley JACKSON (FG) 3:0
IND 54mn Gurwinder Singh CHANDI (FG) 3:1
IND 57mn Rajpal SINGH (FG) 3:2

Pool Standings:
Pool A: 1) Netherlands 9 pts 2) Germany 7 pts 3) New Zealand 6 pts 4) Korea 4pts 5) Argentina 0 pt (-5) 6) Canada 0 pt (-13)
Pool B: 1) England 12 pts 2) Australia 9 pts 3) Spain 6 pts 4) India 3 pts (-4) 5) Pakistan 3 pts (-6) 6) South Africa 3 pts (-1).