England in semi-finals

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The Independent Online

England marched with confidence into the semi finals of the Women's World Cup qualifier here last night with a 5-0 win over Uruguay, ending their games with maximum points. Their likely semi-final opponents on Saturday will be Russia or Japan. Yesterday Russia beat struggling Belgium 9-2 whilst Japan edged home 1-0 against Canada.

England marched with confidence into the semi finals of the Women's World Cup qualifier here last night with a 5-0 win over Uruguay, ending their games with maximum points. Their likely semi-final opponents on Saturday will be Russia or Japan. Yesterday Russia beat struggling Belgium 9-2 whilst Japan edged home 1-0 against Canada.

Jennie Bimson, with a second-minute goal from England's opening penalty corner, set the team on their way. A free hit from Rachel Walker in the ninth minute produced their second, scored by Purdy Miller with a deft deflection into the roof of the net. By now England were in complete control and remained encamped in the Uruguay half. The only surprise was that just two further goals came before the interval. Jane Smith scored with a reverse stick shot in the 25th minute and Tina Cullen deflected in Sarah Blanks free hit.

England continued their domination after the break but again squandered numerous opportunities, Mel Clewlow scoring from just one of their three penalty corners during the half.

Ireland kept their hopes of qualification alive with a 1-0 win over Kazakstan thanks to a Lynsey McVicker goal. They must beat Ukraine in their last game today to have any chance of reaching the semi-finals.

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