WALES DRAW WITH HOCKEY GIANTS PAKISTAN!
Wales held hockey giants Pakistan to a draw following the women’s matches earlier in the day, thousands of fans continued to turn out to support the men’s teams at the Gold Coast Hockey Centre.
Ranked 24th in the FIH Hero World Rankings, Wales have every right to be proud of their draw against 13th ranked Pakistan. Taking inspiration from their women’s win against India earlier in the day, Wales were tough in their tackles and composed in possession – penetrating their opponents circle more often than Pakistan entered theirs throughout the match.
And it was Wales who took the lead in open play, after 33 minutes, through Rupert Shipperley. That did not last long however as, six minutes later, Pakistan levelled the match through an Ali Mubashar penalty corner.
After the two goals, both teams cancelled each other out across the field, with no other shots at goal or penalty corners conceded for the remainder of the game.
Despite riding their luck on occasion, Wales did more than enough to justify their share of the spoils and record what some believe to be one of their best men’s results in their history. Pakistan meanwhile will rue dropped points against a team they would have hoped to beat.
Head Coach for Wales, Zak Jones:
The game against Pakistan was pleasing in some aspects and frustrating in others. Frustrating because we feel as a group we can play better and didn’t really show what we are capable of. We conceded a pretty soft goal and didn’t really show what we are capable of with the ball in attack. However, it was also pleasing in a number of aspects. Firstly, it is a positive that the group feel there is more to come. Secondly, it is another creditable result against a team ranked well above us in the world rankings. Thirdly, it was pleasing that we still managed to play reasonably well given the number of players who’s first outing it is in the Games and how nervous many of them were. Lastly, we also felt that we played pretty well on defence, which is another positive moving forward. Malaysia will be another stern test as they are ranked a place higher than Pakistan and I’m sure they’ll want to bounce back from their defeat to England today. We know it will be another challenge but the group are really looking forward to it and cant want to get back out there.