Hockey: Wright inspires England to deserved success

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The Independent Online

England clinched their second successive major title yesterday in Johannesburg when they came from behind to beat South Korea 2-1 in the final of the inaugural Champions Challenge to win their place in next August's élite Champions Trophy in Macao, China.

England's Australian coach Tricia Heberle, paying tribute to her team, said: "This group has utterly exceeded themselves. They were inspiring. Today they showed tremendous courage and character having gone 1-0 down in the first half. But we kept the Koreans under pressure and knew that we had got to them. "

After going a goal down in the 13th minute to a Seong Eun Kim penalty corner, England clawed themselves back. An individual goal from Anna Bennett brought the equaliser in the 47th minute and then the Millfield schoolgirl Imogen Robertson ran at the rattled Korean defence to win a penalty corner, which Lucilla Wright converted. In defence, Kate Walsh was outstanding to win the Player of the Final award and in goal Hilary Rose, named the goalkeeper of the tournament, was again on form.

England: H Rose; J Bimson, M Clewlow (capt), K Walsh, F Houslop; S Blanks, H Richardson, D Marston-Smith; A Bennett, H Grant, L King. Substitutes used: K Bowden, I Robertson, L Wright, L Wooding.

South Korea: Y S Park; T Kim; J Yoo, S O Lee, H S Ki; E J Kim, K W Oh, S E Kim; J K Kim, J S Park, E Y Lee (capt) Substitutes used: M S Lee, J J Jo, G A Kim.

Umpires: G Spitaleri (It) & J Barnesby (Aus).