*Great Britain only team not to concede a goal after two matches
It was the same scenario as Malaysia once again failed to hold on to their lead and had settle for a 1-1 draw against New Zealand in their second match in the 4th edition of the six-national Sultan of Johor Cup Invitational Under-21 hockey tournament at the Taman Daya Hockey Stadium in Johor Bahru on Monday.
In their opening match against Australia on Sunday, Malaysia led 1-0 but defensive lapses saw Australia score a come-from-behind 2-1 win.
Against the Kiwis the homesters grabbed an 11th minute lead through a field goal by Muhd Najmi Farizal but failed to build on their momentum with poor finishing. New Zealand equalised with Ben Radovonich sounding the board in the 47th minute.
Luck was also not on Malaysia’s side – having an attempt saved on the goalline after two minutes of play in the first half and then another hitting the post in the early minutes of the second half.
Malaysia’s Norsyafiq Sumantri was named Man of the Match.
Great Britain are going great guns in the 4th edition of the six-nation Sultan of Johor Cup Under-21 Invitational hockey tournament, defeating defending champions India 2-0 – their second win in as many matches.
The British had trounced Pakistan 5-0 in their opening match on Sunday and beating two teams from the Indian sub-continent in a space of two days has made them the early favourites for a top two finish. This is the first time Great Britain is competing in the tournament after England made their debut last year and finished at the bottom.
Today’s win over India, however, did not come easy Great Britain who have already qualified for the 2016 Junior World Cup Finals after finishing third in the recent European Championships in Belgium.
A field goal by Benjamin Boon in the 28th minute and another by Samuel French on 50 minutes gave Britain full points in a match that saw goalkeeper Harry Gibson in terrific form to frustrate the Indians. It was India’s first defeat in two matches after their 2-1 win over Malaysia in the first match.
Benjamin was named the Man of the Match.
“It is good to beat two great teams from the Indian sub-continent without conceding a goal. It’s a big boost for the team and we are on track of finishing in the top bracket,” said Great Britain team manager Stephen Floyd.
India coach Harendra Singh, however, is not the least disturbed with the defeat and said: “We are here to expose our players. They are on a learning process.”
In the second match of the day, Australia and Pakistan battled to a 1-1 draw. Pakistan took the lead through a field effort by Muhammad Naveed in the 52nd minute. Andrew Scanlon spoiled the day for Pakistan with the equaliser for Australia when he converted a penalty stroke on 60 minutes.
Pakistan goalkeeper Muhammad Khalid was named the Man of the Match.
RESULTS (Monday Oct 13)
Great Britain 2 India 0
Australia 1 Pakistan 1
Malaysia 1 N.Zealand 1
Tuesday – Rest Day
Australia vs New Zealand (4pm)
India vs Pakistan (6pm)
Malaysia vs Great Britain (8pm)
(All matches at Taman Daya Hockey Stadium, Johor Bahru)