Friday, August 22, 2008

Olympic classification matches

Australia completed their disappointing Olympic campaign with a 2-0 win over Great Britain to claim fifth place.

The game struggled to gain any rhythm throughout the first half but Australia were able to take the lead late in the period through Madonna Bltyh during one of their rare spells of acceleration.

The second half carried on in much the same vein, with both teams suffering from the heat and a lack of motivation after a long and exhausting tournament.

Sarah Thomas got the ball in the net but the Brits' celebrations were cut short by the video umpire - a fate shared by the Hockeyroos who had a goal from Hope Munro called back in a similar fashion.

With less than three minutes on the clock, the British took goalkeeper Beth Storry off the field with Crista Cullen playing kicking-back in a last ditch effort but the effort backfired and Munro sealed the win.

South Africa won the 11th place playoff, beating New Zealand 4-1, playing the match with much more purpose. Marsha Marescia picked up a rebound from Kate Hector’s flick.

New Zealand promptly leveled through Gemma Flynn deflecting the ball in from close range but SA’s Jennifer Wilson put her team back into the lead one minute before half-time.

Vida Ryan and Cindy Brown moved the score to 4-1 and South Africa’s first win of the competition, upsetting the odds somewhat as 8th in the world New Zealand will have some serious questions about what went wrong, failing to garner a win all tournament.

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