England had a mixed day against Germany on the second day of the Volvo Masters Four Nations Junior Tournament in Vught yesterday, with the women winning 3-2 while the men lost their game 2-1, writes Bill Colwill from Vught, Netherlands.
The men, who dominated for long periods, lost their way through woeful finishing, going behind 21 minutes into the second half to a Sebastian Schmoranzer penalty corner. England were on terms within a minute, with Stuart Humphries driving through the German defence. Five minutes later, the goalkeeper Nick Taylor, who had made a number of fine saves, just failed to keep out Christian Kurtz's penalty stroke.
England's women, whose defence had looked brittle against South Africa in the opening game despite their 8-4 victory, were supreme yesterday against the Germans, particularly in the second half, when their opponents mounted a series of aggressive assaults. Caroline Gilbert and the goalkeeper Katy Roberts were outstanding performers.
Early penalty-corner strikes from Melanie Clewlow sent England on their winning way with a two-goal lead after 17 minutes, and Helen Grant struck again early in the second half.
ENGLAND (women v Germany): K Roberts (Blueharts); C Gilbert (Hightown), J Fletcher (Loughborough Students); V Knott (Balsam Leicester), M Merrigan (Loughborough Students); K Bowden (Balsam Leicester), F Greenham (Loughborough Students), L Newcombe (Hightown, capt); S Blanks (Balsam Leicester), H Grant (Bradford Swithenbank), P Miller (Blueharts). Substitutes used: M Clewlow (Canterbury), J Bimson (Olton), K Taylor (Aldridge) and D Marston- Smith (Portishead).
ENGLAND (men v Germany): N Taylor (Havant); J Evennett (Canterbury), R Todd (Havant); D Byfield (East Grinstead), J Collins (East Grinstead), K Reesby (Teddington); S Humphries (Canterbury), B Garrard (Surbiton, capt), M Pearn (Reading), D Mathews (Canterbury), A Boyse (East Grinstead). Substitutes used: L Hodges (Bournville) and Manpreet Kochar (Bournville).