Hockey: Black Sticks claim opening match of Hawke's Bay Cup

Rachel McCann, Kathryn Henry and Shiloh Gloyn celebrate scoring a goal. Photo / Getty Images
Rachel McCann, Kathryn Henry and Shiloh Gloyn celebrate scoring a goal. Photo / Getty Images

The Black Sticks Women have opened their Hawke's Bay Cup tournament with a 1-0 win over India this afternoon.

New Zealand held all the possession and had their fill of chances on attack throughout the game, but desperate defence from the Indians held the hosts to a lone goal from Olivia Merry.

Black Sticks defender Liz Thompson brought up her 100th international cap at just 21 years of age.

Head coach Mark Hager said it was pleasing to open with a win but they needed to be more clinical in finishing their attacking chances.

"We had lots of chances and it really highlights if you don't put away the chances you create it makes it a lot harder to win games," he said.

"I thought we were ok defensively but it was probably our own fault that we turned over a fair bit of ball in crucial situations."

Captain Sam Charlton said it was good to be creating chances but disappointing to only capitalise on one of them.

"We weren't clinical enough with our opportunities up front so that's something to work on for the next game.

"We're pretty disappointed with our penalty corner conversion, not getting any from the five we earned is something we need to improve.

"It was an ok start but it's about making sure we're more clinical, because against some tougher teams we won't get as many opportunities so we need to put them away."

The Black Sticks were hot on attack from the opening whistle and earned two penalty corners and a stroke in the first quarter, but failed to convert their chances.

In the 16th minute the pressure finally told when Merry put together a skilful one-two pass with Charlotte Harrison before hitting into the back of goal.

That proved the end of the scoring with the Black Sticks having plenty of opportunities to extend their lead but India pushed players behind the ball while goalkeeper Savita had an outstanding game.

The Black Sticks are back in action at the Hawke's Bay Cup against China at 3pm tomorrow, with the game live streamed at

In earlier results today Canada defeated Korea 2-1 while defending champions Australia were held to a 1-1 draw against Japan.

- NZ Herald

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter


© Copyright 2016, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production apcf03 at 21 Oct 2016 09:10:36 Processing Time: 295ms