[img_assist|nid=1576|title=|desc=|link=none|align=right|width=86|height=100]LONDON, 31 July – Argentina will look to build on their record-equalling start at the London 2012 Olympic Games women’s hockey tournament, but they face a difficult match against Pan American rivals USA when the second round pool matches begin at the Riverbank Arena on Tuesday.
In news from the first day of the men’s hockey, Spain’s influential skipper Santi Frexia is out of the tournament with a broken arm.
Netherlands v Japan, pool A (08:30)
- This match was originally scheduled for 10:45, but was rescheduled after an appeal from New Zealand.These teams have never met at an Olympic Games.
- Netherlands won 4-1 when they played at the 2012 Champions Trophy in January.
- Maartje Paumen and Kim Lammers both scored doubles for Netherlands, while Akane Shibata scored for Japan.
- Japan have won just one of five previous matches in major international competition against Netherlands, 1-0 in the pool stage of the 2008 Champions Trophy.
- Kaori Chiba scored the only goal of the match for Japan.Netherlands won their opening pool match 3-0 against Belgium on Sunday 29 July and Lammers scored twice.
- Maartje Paumen (NED) failed to score in the opening pool match and still needs two goals to equal Alyson Annan’s (AUS) overall record of 13 Olympic goals.
- Netherlands have only failed to win a medal once (Barcelona 1992) in seven Olympic Games since their debut in 1984.
- Netherlands qualified as champions of the 2011 Euro hockey nations championship.
- Japan lost their opening pool match 4-0 against Great Britain on Sunday.
- Japan were the last team to qualify for London 2012, beating Azerbaijan 5-1 to win the third Olympic qualification tournament in Kakamigahara, Japan in May 2012.
- They won the 2011 Champions Challenge 1 tournament in Dublin, Ireland, recovering from a 2-0 a deficit against USA to win 3-2.
South Africa v New Zealand, pool B (10:45)
- This match was originally scheduled for 08:30, but was rescheduled after an appeal from New Zealand.
- South Africa consigned New Zealand to last place (12th) at Beijing 2008, winning the 11-12 classification match 4-1.
- Cindy Brown, Marsha Marescia, Jennifer Wilson and Vida Ryan all scored for South Africa, and Gemma Flynn for New Zealand.
- Their other Olympic match was at Sydney 2000 when New Zealand won 1-0 in the pool stage.
- Only Pietie Coetzee (RSA) that played in that match is at London 2012.
- South Africa lost their opening pool match 7-1 against Argentina on Sunday.The South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee insisted its team contest a qualifying tournament instead of taking their place at the Games as Africa Cup champions. South Africa qualified as winners of the first Olympic qualification tournament, beating India 3-1 in New Delhi in February 2012.
- New Zealand beat Australia for the first time in five attempts at the Olympic Games, winning their opening pool match 1-0 on Sunday.
- New Zealand qualified for London 2012 winning the three-match 2011 Oceania Cup series against Australia.
- New Zealand failed to win a match at Beijing 2008.
- Charlotte Harrison (NZL) celebrates her 23rd birthday on Tuesday 31 July.
Belgium v China, pool A (13:45)
- These teams have never played each other in major international competition.
- Belgium lost their first Olympic match 3-0 against Netherlands on Sunday.
- They are the only team making their Olympic debut at London 2012 and the lowest ranked (16th) team in the competition.
- They qualified as winners of the second Olympic qualification tournament, beating Ireland 4-1 in Kontich, Belgium in March 2012.
- Belgium have the women’s tournament’s youngest squad with an average age of 23 years 237 days, and its two youngest players: Aisling D’Hooghe (17-339) and Judith Vandermeiren (17-354).China won their opening pool match 4-0 against Korea on Sunday with two goals from Ma Yibo.China qualified from the 2010 Asian Games, when they beat Korea to gold on penalty strokes after a 0-0 draw.China scored more field goals (16) than any other team at Beijing 2008.
Great Britain v Korea, pool A (16:00)
- These teams have met five times at the Olympic Games, but not since a 2-2 draw in the pool stage at Sydney 2000.
- Korea have won an Olympic silver medal twice, at Seoul 1988 and Atlanta 1996.They beat Great Britain 1-0 in the semifinal at Seoul 1988.
- Great Britain’s only Olympic medal, silver at Barcelona 1992, came with a 4-3 win in extra-time against Korea.
- They also beat Korea 3-1 in the pool stage at Barcelona 1992.Great Britain assistant coach Karen Brown played in all three of those matches.
- Great Britain won their opening pool match 4-0 against Japan on Sunday, the first time they had won an opening match since beating Argentina 1-0 at Seoul 1988.
- They lost captain Kate Walsh with a fractured jaw in the final minutes of that match, but she has not been ruled out of London 2012.
- Great Britain have the women’s tournament’s oldest squad with an average age of 27 years 268 days.Great Britain won the four-team test event at the Riverbank Arena in May 2012, beating Argentina 2-0 in the final.
- Korea lost their opening pool match 4-0 against China on Sunday.
- Korea finished seventh at the 2012 Champions Trophy in Rosario, Argentina, beating China 3-2 in a shoot-out competition.Korea qualified as runners-up at the 2010 Asian Games, when they lost to China on penalty strokes after a 0-0 draw.
Argentina v United States, pool B (19:00)
- Repeat of the 2011 Pan American Games gold medal match when USA claimed a surprise 4-2 victory in Guadalajara, Mexico.
- That was USA’s only win against Argentina in major international competition.Goals were scored by Paige Selenski, Shannon Taylor, Kathleen O’Dnnell and Michelle Vittese, all in USA’s London 2012 squad.
- USA haven’t beaten Argentina in four previous Olympic meetings.Their best result was a 2-2 draw in the opening pool match at Beijing 2008, Angela Loy equalising in the 64th minute after USA trailed 2-1 at half-time.
- The teams’ first Olympic meeting was in the pool stage at Seoul 1988, Argentina winning 2-1.They played again in the classification round, Argentina needing extra-time to win 3-1 and consign USA to last (eighth) place.They also met in the pool stage at Atlanta 1996, Argentina winning 2-1.
- Argentina equalled the record for the biggest winning margin in women’s Olympic hockey, beating South Africa 7-1 in their opening pool match on Sunday.
- Argentina won the last major tournament before London 2012, beating Great Britain 1-0 to win their fifth champions trophy title.
- Argentina have won medals at the previous three Olympic Games, silver at Sydney 2000 and bronze at Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008.
- USA lost their opening pool match 2-1 against Germany on Sunday.
Germany v Australia, pool B (21:15)
- These teams have won four of the eight women’s Olympic titles between them.Australia are the most successful women’s team in Olympic hockey with three golds (1988, 1996, 2000) and Germany were champions in 2004.
- Germany were fourth at Beijing 2008 and Australia have not won a medal since their last title in 2000, finishing fifth at both Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008.
- Germany have a 2-1 record in Olympic matches between the teams, winning their last meeting 2-1 in the opening pool match at Athens 2004.
- Four players from that match at Athens 2004 are at London 2012: GER – Natascha Keller, Fanny Rinne, Mandy Haase; AUS – Toni Cronk. Australia assistant coach Katrina Powell captained Australia in that match.
- Germany beat Australia 1-0 in their final pool match at the 2010 world cup, sending them to the semifinals at the expense of Australia.
- Germany withstood a USA comeback to win their opening pool match 2-1 on Sunday.
- Australia suffered their first defeat in five Olympic matches to New Zealand (1-0) in their opening pool match on Sunday (29 July).