Friday, July 12, 2024

England youth has Hockey World Cup X-Factor, says George Pinner

Bhubaneswar – Goalkeeper George Pinner believes that England’s young debutants are bringing some ‘X-factor’ to their World Cup run.

East Grinstead defender Luke Taylor and Will Calnan, the 22-year-old Hampstead & Westminster forward, scored debut World Cup goals to put England one match away from their third semi-final in a row.

That comes against Argentina on Wednesday where the first semi-finalist will be decided.

“All the young guys have a fantastic attitude,” said Pinner.

“Calnan has something about him, Jack Waller is a seriously calm guy and Zach Wallace makes things happen.

“They have what we need in the squad and that’s a bit of X-Factor.”

And the 31-year-old stopper urged England to further build on their momentum against the world No 2 side.

He said: “The thing we talk about most as a team is that we get out of a group with a hard-win game, then we’ve dropped off and played for a bronze medal. The key thing now is building performance on performance.”

The good news for England is that Argentina’s Pool win saw them move directly to the last eight and no game for six days heading into the clash, while Danny Kerry’s side have played twice.

The last time England beat Argentina at a World Cup came in 1986 when they went on to reach the final.

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