Hockey Junior Women's World Cup

Media Release – Argentina, Netherlands first to top pools, England knock off hosts while Zimbabwe shock Canada

1 April 2022

Potchefstroom, South Africa: The opening day of the FIH Hockey Women’s Junior World Cup – the first-ever FIH World Cup hosted in Africa – was exciting and full of promising hockey. England stormed to the top of the three-team Pool B with a 3-0 win over South Africa, while Netherlands put away nine goals on the USA to take the top of Pool A. Zimbabwe provided the stunner of the day, out-playing Canada and taking a 2-1 win off the Junior Pan American champions. In Pool C, Korea squeaked out a 1-0 win over Uruguay, who were in their debut appearance at this tournament, while defending champions, Argentina, blasted past Austria, 8-0, to also secure three points and top Pool C.

England v South Africa (Pool B)– Potchefstroom, North West University (RSA)

England’s Lorna Mackenzie was two-for-two on penalty corners as she buried from the top of the battery in the first and fourth quarter of the game. Captain Millie Giglio converted on a penalty stroke in the 45th minute to help secure the 3-0 win over hosts, South Africa.

Giglio along with Claudia Swain and Maddie Axford all had dangerous chances for England, while South Africa’s chance were few and far between. Keeper Mathapelo Ramasimong was kept busy in the South African goal, while Onthatlile Zulu and Jeanrie Thomas were strong on the offence.

England captain, Millie Giglio, said after the match: ‘It was a really good start from the girls. Good to start the tournament on a high. Obviously very happy with a 3-0 win, but there’s definitely a lot of things we can work on. And we’re playing Ireland tomorrow afternoon, so we need to recover and focus on the next match.’

South Africa’s Ramasimong said after the match: ‘We learnt today. We saw what works and what doesn’t, and we will use this opportunity to fix what we need to fix. I think the technics and the basics didn’t go well today. Also, we were a bit nervous, playing the opening match of such a huge tournament. But I think that when we come back Monday, we’ll know what to do, we’ll know what we want.’

Netherlands vs United States (Pool A) – Potchefstroom, North West University (RSA)

It was a scoring frenzy for the Netherlands who dropped the United States 9-0 to start off Pool A play. From the fourth minute to the 59th minute, there was no question who was in command of the match. Luna Fokke opened the scoring and added two more in the game to lead the Netherlands in scoring, while five other Dutch players also got on the board.

Rosa Fernig, Netherlands captain, said after the match: ‘It was an amazing start for us. We scored a lot of goals. It’s a good feeling to start a tournament like this. So, we’re really happy with this match. Now, we will recover and look at tomorrow’s match against Canada. So, we will prepare for that one and see if we can make it as good as this one.’

In the first half, the USA were unable to muster a single shot on Annabel Skubisz , who split duties with Madison Kahn in net. Fokke opened the scoring on a beautiful drag flick into the bottom corner, while Noor Omrani made it 2-0 burying a back-hand shot after a break away. Noor de Baat, sporting a familiar white head band and number 24, showed a flash of the famous Eva de Goede as she crafted her way in to the American circle to bury a confident back-hand to push Netherlands to 3-0. Jip Dicke tipped in a left side attack to make it 4-0 at half time.

In the second half Fokke put away two more drag flicks from the penalty corner battery, while skipper Roas Fernig also blasted from the penalty corner to get on the scoreboard. Marleen Jochems and Mette Winter both one-timed the ball into the goal after clinical passing plays through the circle to get the finally tally to nine and to command the top of Pool A.

USA captain, Kayla Blas, said after the match: ‘We’re really looking forward to learning from this match, grabbing some lessons and forgetting about the outcome. For our next game, we will take some key points, focus on what we really want to change, not worry about anything else and go forward.’

Canada v Zimbabwe (Pool A) – Potchefstroom, North West University (RSA)

Zimbabwe shocked the opening day as they earned a historic 2-1 victory over Pan American junior champions, Canada, in the second game of Pool A play.

Following the match Natalie Terblanche was named Player of the Match and she said: ‘We were under a lot of pressure. We were trying to hold our possession so we wouldn’t let them take us in the last few minutes but it was a good game. I’m glad we put the two in first to keep the pressure and get the win.’

Tremendous defence and tenacious attack fended the nervous Canadian side off. Alexi Terblanche scored in the fifth minute on a baseline cross that deflected in off Canadian defender Harnoor Malhi to beat keeper Ishaval Sekhon. Lilian Pope fired the ball between the legs of Sekhon after some brave efforts from Gugulethu Sibanda in the second quarter to make it 2-0, the score line that stood at half time. Canada struggled to convert in the circle, squandering away multiple penalty corner chances.

Zimbabwe picked up three yellow cards in the final two quarters, giving Canada a two-person advantage at one point late in the game. Canada’s Sam McCrory mustered an effort towards goal on another broken down penalty corner but this time midfielder Stefanie Sajko was there to get Canada on the board. Late in the game, McCrory’s 3D efforts almost notched a tying goal but the calm Jenna Mathieson, in goal for Zimbabwe, denied that chance, as she did all game. The victory comes as the first for Zimbabwe at a women’s Junior World Cup.

Canadian captain Melanie Scholz said after the game: ‘I think it was a learning experience most of all. It took us till the third quarter to kick in, so that’s a big lesson, to start strong. We need to get hungry in the circle and just chasing that goal, I think that will help us a lot.’

Korea v Uruguay (Pool C) – Potchefstroom, North West University (RSA)

It took 56 minutes before Korea’s Sunghee Jung’s heroics broke the deadlock in the first Pool C battle between Korea and Uruguay. Korea seemed to have the possession in the first half, while Uruguay were much more lively in the second. Making their Junior World Cup debut, Uruguay, also Pan American junior silver medallists, made a strong appearance and kept the pace well with Korea, Junior World Cup champions in 2001 and 2005.

It was a physical battle that saw just little chances for Uruguay in the opening half. The best chance came for Manuela Vidal whose long pass into the circle was softly deflected towards goal and then cleared easily by the boot of Kim Eunji.

In the second half Jung Sunghee’s cross to a reaching Kim Seona almost broke the deadlock but Seona couldn’t quite get a touch on it as the ball did beat keeper Maria Bate. Uruguay’s Manuela Quinones had an open look at goal on her back-hand in the final quarter but her shot was steered away by the glove of Kim Eunji. With less than five minutes to go a quick pass through the circle from Lee Juyeon was well received by Jung Sunghee and the blast beat Bate low, stick side to seal the game 1-0 for Korea.

Following the game, Korean coach Moon Yoo said: ‘We had to substitute six players just before the tournament, but we played good enough today. It was our first match, so a difficult match. But our players did their best and got a win, so we’re happy. Our next match is against Argentina, which is also a very strong team. We must be strong in the press and get scoring opportunities then.’

Uruguay’s captain and goalkeeper Victoria Bate said: “We have mixed feelings. We did our best, we gave everything, but the result didn’t go our way. We will keep on fighting, learn from our mistakes, correct them and try to do our best in the next match.”

Argentina v Austria (Pool C) – Potchefstroom, North West University RSA)

The defending champions, Argentina, wasted no time introducing Austria to the pace of Junior World Cup play. Daiana Pacheco was named Player of the Match as she tallied three goals and set up another. Valentina Raposo scored two penalty strokes to support the win.

Pacheco was humble after the match only to add: ‘I am surprised to win this award as really the whole team deserves this. This win is a result of all of our efforts.’

Pacheco buried Argentina’s opening penalty corner, capitalizing at the far post off a rebound that was struck by Raposo and initially saved by keeper Fabienne Gnehm. Minutes later, Maria Adorno made it 2-0 on a lethal back-hand strike. Austria’s Katharina Proksch and Fiona Felber did well to stymie wave after wave of Argentine attack including dangerous runs from Catalina Andrade and Celina di Santo.

Austria’s tactic to crowd the space defensively kept Argentina at bay but there were few runs forward despite the attacking control from Felber. Gnehm did well to keep her team alive, notably denying a back-hand from Juana Castellaro in the 29th minute. In the final play of the second quarter, a long aerial into the circle resulted in Maria Adorno getting pushed over and Raposo was there to bury the resulting penalty stroke to make it 3-0 at half time.

An errant pass back to Helene Herzog resulted in an Argentine penalty corner late in the third but the flick from di Santo was saved by subbed-in keeper Corinna Stedronsky. Finally, Sofia Cairo put away a pass from Pacheco to make it 4-0 and the game started to open up. Pacheco’s back-hand cross was wonderfully deflected in by the stick of Brisa Bruggesser for Argentina’s fifth goal. Pacheco slapped in her second of the game in the 50th and Raposo and Pacheco each scored again to bring the total to 8-0.

Following the match Argentina coach Fernando Ferrara said: ‘I am proud of how the team played but we have to focus on what’s ahead. There’s a long road to go and every rival is a challenge.’

“Even though we got some goals, I think we still fought for improving ourselves. Now we will analyse our game and see what we will do better in our next match”, Austria captain Fiona Felber commented.

Play resumes tomorrow, 2 April, at University of North West, with Pool D play between India and Wales, followed by Germany and Malaysia. Pool A play will see USA face Zimbabwe and the mighty Netherlands play Canada. The last game of the day will feature Pool B’s Ireland and England. From 1–12 April, the Watch.Hockey app will be live streaming all matches, everywhere in the world.

FIH Hockey Women’s Junior World Cup South Africa 2021 – 1 April 2022

Potchefstroom, North West University (RSA)

Result: Match 1
England 3, South Africa 0
Player of the Match: Lorna Mackenzie (ENG)
Umpires: Lisette Baljon (NED), Victoria Pazos (PAR), Gema Calderon (ESP – reserve)

Result: Match 2
Netherlands 9, United States 0
Player of the Match: Luna Hokke (NED)
Umpires: Alison Keogh (RL), Wanri Venter (RSA), Sophie Bockelmann (GER-reserve)

Result: Match 3
Canada 1, Zimbabwe 2
Player of the Match: Natalie Terblanche (ZIM)
Umpires: Yoon Seon Kim (KOR), Ines El Hajem (FRA), Maria Locatelli (ARG-reserve)

Result: Match 4
Korea 1, Uruguay 0
Player of the Match: Jung Sunghee (KOR)
Umpires: Rebecca Woodcock (ENG), Ivona Makar (CRO), Catalina Montesino (CHI-reserve)

Result: Match 5
Argentina 8, Austria 0
Player of the Match: Daiana Pacheco (ARG)
Umpires: Celine Martin-Schmets (BEL), Ilaria Amorosini (ITA), Lisette Baljon (NED-reserve)

To see the current standings, please click here.
To see the complete match schedule, please click here.


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