England beat Ireland to top their group

PUBLISHED: 21:14 16 July 2017

Alex Danson celebrates a goal with Jo Hunter  (pic Rodrigo Jaramillo/England Hockey)

Alex Danson celebrates a goal with Jo Hunter (pic Rodrigo Jaramillo/England Hockey)


England 3 Ireland 2

Alex Danson’s 102nd international goal guided England to a 3-2 victory over Ireland and secured a top place finish in Pool A at the World Hockey League Semi-Finals.

England had raced into a 2-0 half-time lead through Sarah Haycroft and Shona McCallin before Ireland produced a stunning comeback to level after the break.

But Danson’s strike in the 43rd minute restored the lead for her side who saw off late Irish pressure to seal the win and their place at the top of their pool.

Goalkeeper Maddie Hinch said: “We came up against a really strong Irish performance. But we didn’t panic and knew that the next goal would be crucial and that we could get it.

“There isn’t much this team hasn’t been through, it was a shock but we remained calm and got the goal we needed.”

The opening exchanges were evenly contested before Ireland created the first chance of the match, but Maddie Hinch was quickly off her line save Anna O’Flanagan.

England responded and went on to look the better side in the opening quarter, forcing a number of dangerous circle penetrations. Shortly before the break England made this pressure count, Sarah Haycroft broke down the right and crossed onto an Irish foot which deflected into the goal.

The second quarter saw England twice go down to ten players which meant they spent the majority of the next fifteen minutes in their own half. However just before the half-time break good work from Lily Owsley won a penalty corner, McCallin popped up at the left hand post to deflect home Giselle Ansley’s dragflick.

After the interval Ireland levelled inside two minutes of the restart to stun England.

Firstly Daly’s reverse shot deflected in off Ansley’s stick before Kathryn Mullan’s bobbled shot through a crowded circle snuck past Hinch.

Ireland continued to press but England’s defence held firm and on the stroke of the final break they were back in the lead when a penalty corner Ansley’s effort was saved but Danson reacted quickest to hammer home the rebound.

In the final fifteen minutes the Irish battled hard to level once again and only some fine defending and standout tackles from Anna Toman and Hollie Webb. Ireland elected for a kicking back in a late attempt to equalise but England held firm.

England will contest their quarter final on Tuesday which will be shown live on BT Sport.

England: Maddie Hinch (GK), Giselle Ansley, Laura Unsworth, Hollie Webb, Anna Toman, Emily Defroand, Sarah Haycroft, Susannah Townsend, Nicola White, Alex Danson, Sophie Bray

Subs (Used): Grace Balsdon, Zoe Shipperley, Hannah Martin , Shona McCallin, Lily Owsley. Subs (Unused): Amy Tennant (GK)


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hackney Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hackney Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hackney Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Hackney Stories

National League: Eastleigh 0 Leyton Orient 0

FA Cup quarter-finals: Swansea City 0 Tottenham Hotspur 3


I have written today to the chief executives of the Environment Agency and the Canal and River Trust having seen little in the way of effective action from either of these agencies to tackle the oil spill on the River Lea, writes Cllr Ian Rathbone, Lea Bridge ward.

Yesterday, 22:30

The 46-year-old elaborated on his thoughts that it takes a long-term process to breed a winning mentality rather than one successful domestic cup run

Yesterday, 18:00

Arsenal have encouraged supporters to follow advice from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office after they were drawn to play CSKA Moscow in the Europa League.

Yesterday, 18:00

London Lions clamped down on the Flyers right from the start as they cruised to a comfortable League win.

Yesterday, 17:01

Sainsbury’s in Dalston is under fire for ditching its free parking for customers.


To celebrate LGBT history month, Hackney resident Amanda talks about her journey to becoming a foster carer, with the council’s support and training.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read sport

Show Job Lists