Saturday, June 25, 2022

Great Britain stake third place at Olympic hockey test event

James Tindall (PC, 35)
Rob Moore (FG, 57)
VR Raghunath 24 (PC)

[img_assist|nid=3828|title=GB’s Best|desc=Richard Smith, who along with keeper James Fair is PUSH’s pick for GB player of the tournament – Andy Smith|link=node|align=right|width=180|height=255]Great Britain finished on an high note in the Riverside Arena with a 2-1 win over India.

There is a lot to admire about this young Indian side, but, once again, small mistakes at big moments led to their downfall. One of these was a foot in the circle just before half time which gave James Tindall a chance to put away a corner and get GB level.

For more pictures see the gallery.

This came after VR Raghunath put India ahead with a powerful corner in the 24th minute. Sandeep is clearly the preferred corner striker, but he spent so little time on the pitch against GB here and Germany on Saturday, one has to question his usefulness to the side.

Rob Moore’s winner came from a kneeling deflection on an Iain Mackay cross. It wasn’t a copybook GB performance with coach Jason Lee bemoaning his side’s lack of energy and intensity.

For India, Ignace Tirkey is a solid defender, Sardar Singh is a top-rank midfielder and SV Sunil is an old-school turn and burn right winger. There is a lot of promise there in a squad with an average age of 23.

Hopefully coach Michael Nobbs will be given enough time for India to make their way up the world rankings and develop the experience needed to win major tournaments. That is the hope, but with no wins in thier first outing at the Olympic hockey venue, and the Olympics only 83 days away, a long-term view might be hard to sustain.

GB’s Ashley Jackson received an official reprimand for rude and abusive language towards an official during the game.


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