Hockey: Grace lifts Students to pass final test

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The Independent Online

Scottish attempts to take both International Indoor titles failed at the final hurdles in Birmingham yesterday. The national women's side, playing as Caledonians, lost to Olton in a penalty-stroke shoot-out 1-2, after a 3-3 draw in normal time. Dundee Wanderers, the Scottish club champions, lost 2-3 to Loughborough Students.

Scottish attempts to take both International Indoor titles failed at the final hurdles in Birmingham yesterday. The national women's side, playing as Caledonians, lost to Olton in a penalty-stroke shoot-out 1-2, after a 3-3 draw in normal time. Dundee Wanderers, the Scottish club champions, lost 2-3 to Loughborough Students.

For Students, the English champions, it was their first title in their third successive final. After a cautious opening, the final came alight in an extraordinary 90 seconds. Glenn Kirkham opened the scoring for Students, but Dundee responded with goals from Colin Knight and Alan Johnson.

A goal from Jon Bleby two minutes into the second half put Students on terms and after squandering a number of further opportunities with over-elaborate play, Students were grateful to Matt Grace for a simple but well-taken winner.

Olton's victory was based on team effort, with just two bench players compared with Scotland's full quota. The match looked over for Olton as Caledonians led 3 -1, with Helen Craig scoring two penalty corners. However, they clawed their way back, with Laura Hughes scoring a solo goal and providing the pass for Rachel Ferguson to get the equaliser.

In the Jahann Koller Tournament in Vienna, Surbiton beat Dutch champions Tilbur in their final game to finish seventh.

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