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Mixed Fortunes for Great Britain in Olympic Openers

26th July 2021

By Surbiton HC

Tokyo’s Oi Stadium has seen plenty of goals during its early Olympic hockey action in recent days.

Great Britain: Updates

GB Men took a solid 3-1 victory over South Africa in the opening match, with Sam Ward’s penalty corner strike followed by field goals from Liam Ansell and Jack Waller. The men controlled the game but a physical South African side defended hard and deep to limit their chances until late on.

Their second game against Canada took place in the early hours of Monday and Team GB came away with another 3-1 win, with Ward and Ansell (2) getting on the scoresheet once again. GB will hope to keep their winning running going to secure a quarter final spot, with Germany up next at 4.15am BST on Tuesday morning.

The GB Women had a tough opener in hot conditions against Germany, losing 2-1 despite dominating possession and generating more chances than their European counterparts. Sarah Jones tucked away tidily in the opening quarter after Giselle Ansley’s initial penalty corner delivery was blocked by the German defence, but GB conceded an unfortunate penalty stroke and a breakaway goal to see their early lead pegged back.

Next up for the women was South Africa. Having gone behind in the first quarter, GB equalised shortly before half time through Ellie Rayer and went on to dominate the second half. Goals from Lily Owsley, Laura Unsworth and another from Rayer made it 4-1 at full time. India are next up for GB at 2am BST on Wednesday.

Other hockey headlines from the opening two rounds

  • South Africa Men took a shock 3-0 lead against the Netherlands on Sunday, only to lose 5-3 after the Dutch rallied late on
  • Australia’s Men have scored 12 goals in two games (5-3 vs Japan and 7-1 vs India) to storm to the top of Pool A
  • New Zealand Women comfortably beat Argentina 3-0 in their opening game, but Australia are the early Pool B front runners having scored nine in their first two games
  • Hosts Japan had late heartbreak against China’s Women on Sunday, conceding late in the fourth quarter to find themselves on the wrong end of a 4-3 thriller