England unable to overhaul Australia

England v Australia at Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games - Photo by Ady Kerry

England were unable to overhaul world champions Australia in their Commonwealth Games semi-final, going down 4-1 at Glasgow National Hockey Centre.

Australia 4 (2)
Tristan White 3 (PC)
Simon Orchard 11 (FG)
Chris Ciriello 61 (PC)
Eddie Ockenden 69 (FG) 

England 1 (0)
Harry Martin 51 (FG)

To watch highlights from the match, click here to go to the BBC Sport website.

Australia took an early lead through Tristan White as he swept home from a well-rehearsed penalty corner through the legs of George Pinner after three minutes.

They doubled their advantage on 11 minutes when Simon Orchard’s superb reverse-stick shot found the bottom corner.

Matt Ghodes then forced a good stop from Pinner having rounded Michael Hoare, while Harry Martin had England’s first opening shortly afterwards but was denied by Kookaburras keeper.

England dug in and after half-time and got one back on 51 minutes when David Condon got to the by-line and found Martin with his cutback, the midfielder scoring from a yard out.

Simon Mantell was then denied by Knowles as England were in the ascendency, but a Chris Ciriello’s strike from another penalty corner helped Australia restored their two-goal advantage with ten minutes to go.

England went for broke, bringing off Pinner for another outfield player, but Eddie Ockenden capitalized on that to seal the 4-1 win.

The Defeat means England will contest the bronze medal match on Sunday morning against either New Zealand or India.

England Captain Barry Middleton said after the match: “We started slower, slower than what we wanted and they started fast but we know that is what they do and if we can keep it close we could get back into it. We were just a bit passive in the first half and let them come at us. We were upset with the goals we conceded but there were others they could have scored so 2-0 was a fair reflection.

“In the second half we had momentum going but they got their third at a good time for them and it was too much to come back.”

“I think it’s pretty simple now, some games you find are hard to pick yourself up for but I think there have been a lot tougher games to get myself up for than a bronze medal.”

England Men's Head Coach Bobby Crutchley added: “In the first half we were a bit off it for too long and then in the second half we started to get ourselves up for the fight which is what we needed to do. Then it showed that we could actually compete and we put them under a bit of pressure but we needed to continue that as they came back at us and showed why they are such a good side."

“We have to be pleased with some of our play but ultimately we don’t want to run them close, we want to beat them.”

To find out more about hockey at the Glasgow 2014 Commownealth Games, head to the BBC Sport website. To see highlights from the match, click here.