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England men seal semi-final place at expense of valliant South Africa

England 2 South Africa 1
New Zealand 1 Canada 1
Australia 7 Malaysia 0 (m)
India 7 Pakistan 4 (m)

Striker James Tindall was again the hero as England booked a Commonwealth Games hockey semi-final spot with a 2-1 over South Africa.
Tindall produced the winner late in the second half and followed it up with a late charge down of a Springbok penalty corner strike to take England into a likely semi-final clash with either Pakistan or India.

England 2 South Africa 1
New Zealand 1 Canada 1
Australia 7 Malaysia 0 (m)
India 7 Pakistan 4 (m)

Striker James Tindall was again the hero as England booked a Commonwealth Games hockey semi-final spot with a 2-1 over South Africa.
Tindall produced the winner late in the second half and followed it up with a late charge down of a Springbok penalty corner strike to take England into a likely semi-final clash with either Pakistan or India.
The match was a trial for both teams played in the midday heat of New Delhi. Ashley Jackson put the English ahead roofing a flick from the left baseline after a sharp run. That first-half goal came somewhat against the run of play with the South African’s slick passing and excellent control denying England possession for long periods.
South Africa started the second period in similar style and their well-deserved equaliser came when East Grinstead’s Gareth Carr set up Taine Paton in front of goal. At 1-1 South Africa were still out of the semis and England in danger of losing top place in the group. South Africa pressed hard for a win but their so-far deadly penalty corner routine was faltering.
Then with many player on their last legs in the heat, Tindall dug deep. The Surbiton striker robbed Lance Louw in the South African defence then carried the ball into the circle and slipped the ball past Erasmus Pieterse with a deft finish.
Just time left for a few corner-defence heroics from England and then straight into the ice baths. Phew what a scorcher.

New Zealand vs Malaysia

A courageous decision by Blacksticks coach Shane Mcleod to play without a goalkeeper in the dying minutes of the game paid off when Hayden Shaw netted an equaliser from New Zealand’s fifth penalty corner against Canada. The goal cancelled out Sukhwinder Singh’s first-half goal for Canada and took the New Zealanders into the semi-finals on a high, although they would still have gone through on goal difference with a 1-0 loss.

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