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Hockey: China women finish sixth in World Cup; India men beat Korea

China (in red) finished in the top six at the Rabobank World Cup in the Netherlands, but ended their campaign with a disappointing 4-0 loss to New Zealand. Photos: FIH.

China (in red) ended their Rabobank World Cup campaign with a 4-0 loss to New Zealand, but still achieved their aim of finishing in the top six in the Netherlands. Photos: FIH.

June 15, 2014: China’s women achieved their target of finishing in the top six at the Rabobank World Cup in the Netherlands despite finishing their campaign with a 4-0 loss to New Zealand in the fifth-place playoff on Saturday. Korea finished seventh after beating Germany 4-2, while Japan lost 2-0 to South Africa in the ninth-place playoff.

 

Anita Punt, the Black Sticks’ ‘queen of speed’, scored twice against China, firstly with a trademark drag-flick penalty corner in the sixth minute. China came close to equalising through Yan Han and Huang Ting, while Xi Xiayun shot just wide when left unmarked in front of goal just before the end of the first half.

 

Straight after the break, New Zealand went on the attack and after a period of pressure, Kayla Whitelock scored in the 45th minute through a penalty stroke after the captain herself was fouled in the area following a move started by Punt.

 

China were unable to score from a series of penalty corners before New Zealand scored twice late on, first through a Punt penalty corner in the 60th minute and then three minutes later when Krystal Forgesson netted from open play.

 

China coach You Baodong said: “The New Zealand team played well. They used their speed to good effect. We didn’t play as well, but we played to our target, which was to finish in the top six. From this tournament, we have learnt a lot about ourselves. We know we must improve our dribbling skills. Also, we can work on defensive skills and the ability to intercept.”

 

Korea beat Germany 4-2 in the seventh-place playoff.

Korea beat Germany 4-2 in the seventh-place playoff.

Korea beat Germany to finish seventh, taking a three-goal lead through goals by Kim O-kiu (13th minute), Han Hye-lyoung (30th) and captain Kim Jong-eun (48th).

 

Germany quickly responded came back with goals by Tina Bachmann (50th) and Julia Muller (53rd) and Korea had to defend a series of penalty corners before Cheon Seul-ki scored the fourth on a counter-attack in the 66th minute.

 

India were Asia’s top performers in the men’s tournament after beating Korea 3-0 in the ninth-place playoff, while Malaysia were hammered 6-2 by South Africa to finish bottom of the 12-team event.

 

India took the lead against Korea in the sixth minute after SV Sunil made a blistering run down the right before setting up Akashdeep Singh at the far post. Rupinder Singh added a penalty stroke in the 43rd minute, awarded after the tall defender’s goalbound penalty corner hit a Korean defender on the line.

 

As with the first goal, Sunil also set up India’s third goal for Akashdeep Singh, who tomahawked the ball into the net in the 49th minute.

 

India (in yellow) beat Korea to finish ninth in the men’s tournament

India (in yellow) beat Korea to finish ninth in the men’s World Cup.

India captain Sardar Singh was pleased with India’s overall tournament as they continue to bed in under Australian coach Terry Walsh, who took over at the end of last year.

 

“Our tournament started really good. We had lots of youngsters and they have had to learn quickly. They are improving really quickly. If we play like we did today, we will continue to improve,” Singh said.

 

“We worked on improving our defending, particularly after conceding in the last minutes against Belgium and England, after those games we didn’t concede like that again. Beating Korea was good. We need to do that again in the Asia Cup to qualify for the Olympics.”

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