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Commonwealth Games 2002
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Hockey Monday, 29 July, 2002, 16:35 GMT 17:35 UK
India hold England
England's Mandy Nicholson (right) and India's Jyoti Kullu
India took the lead in the first half

England 1-1 India

England face a play-off with Scotland for a place in the semi-finals after a disappointing 1-1 draw with India in their final Pool Two match.

The hosts, who began the day at the top of Pool Two, finished second after New Zealand beat Canada in their match later on Monday afternoon.

open quote
I am not disappointed with the performance
end quote
England coach Tricia Heberle

India are also in the play-offs.

England coach Tricia Heberle admitted that her players were not fit enough to cope with the heat and humidity in Manchester.

"We struggled in the heat. When people get fatigued they tend to make very poor decisions and it was as much the conditions as anything else," she said.

"We had kids putting their hands up after seven minutes (asking to be taken off) - it was oppressive down here. We did a lot more subbing than we would ever normally do.

"It was a game we really wanted to win. But we are unbeaten, I am not disappointed with the performance but it was a struggle to keep them going."

Jennie Bimson
Bimson levelled for England

The result could have been worse for England who rode their luck towards the end of the second half.

Seven minutes from the final whistle, India had the ball in the net only for the referee to deem the shot too high, even though the ball appeared to hit the backboard.

India had taken a surprise lead in the first half, Suman Bala Saini's shot from a penalty corner deflected over the outstretched glove of goalkeeper Hilary Rose by Olton midfielder Rachel Walker.

But England's anguish turned to ecstasy four minutes later when, from Mel Clewlow's blocked penalty corner shot the ball broke to Jennie Bimson and she swept home from close range.

The hosts made all the running but lacked composure in the D and on more than one occasion, their final pass was found wanting.


New Zealand 3-1 Canada

New Zealand booked their semi-final berth with victory over Canada.

The Blacksticks went into the game knowing a victory would secure automatic progression into the last four.

But doubts started to arise when Canada took a 10th-minute lead through DebCuthbert, the midfielder weaving her way through the New Zealand defence to slothome.

But the Kiwis were quick to turn up the heat and equalised in the 23rd minute when Diana Weavers' penalty corner strike was deflected in by Jaimee Provan.

Canada then saw Cuthbert sent to the sin bin on the stroke of half-time and, while she was still off the pitch at the beginning of the second half, Niniwa Roberts-Lang fired home a penalty corner rebound to put the Kiwis ahead.

The Kiwis wrapped up victory in the 59th minute through Moira Senior.

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