Match 1, Saturday 24 July:
Wales 3-2 England (Spawforth 4’, FG), (Henshall 56’, FG)
Match 2, Sunday 25 July:
Wales 1-2 England (O'Malley-Kumar 35’, PC) (Pollock 54’, FG)
England U18 Girls played an U19 Girls Wales team at Millfield School in the final weekend in the GB & Ireland Development Series.
The first match saw England open the scoring in the fourth minute through a well taken shot from Pippi Spawforth. Most of the goal scoring opportunities continued to fall to England, but it was Wales who were the more clinical team in front of goal, opening a 3-1 lead soon after half-time. England began to show more intensity as the game went on and were given hope when Cara Henshall found the net in the 56th minute. However, Wales defended valiantly, and England could not find an equaliser.
Although England opened the second match with more energy than in the first, it was still Wales who took the lead, the team scoring from a penalty corner in the 20th minute. After the half time break, England began to play with more fluidity, finding an equaliser through a Grace O'Malley-Kumar penalty corner in the 35th minute. England piled pressure on the Wales goal and eventually found a breakthrough via a run from Minnie Pollock which she seamlessly ended with a reverse stick shot into the bottom corner of the net.
The results mean that England finished in second place to Ireland in the Development Series.
Head Coach, John Bell, commented:
“It was a good development lesson in the first game against Wales for this young group. Composure and tight skills, with a strong decisive application of their attacking circle principles are needed to convert the continual pressure applied to the opposition goal.
“Through this six game GB & Ireland series, the staff have been impressed with this group’s development across all areas of the game. This has especially been shown in the team’s defensive set up, the ability to play through the lines with fluidity and intensity, and the creation of many goal-scoring opportunities.
“In this second game against Wales, they converted these chances when it mattered under pressure."