Germans in command

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The Independent Online

reports from Amstelveen

Germany 5 Great Britain 1

Great Britain were well beaten here last night in the second of their games in the NCM Four Nations Tournament by a German side which, although they coasted for periods, seemed able to lift themselves at ease to create maximum discomfort.

Germany took a third-minute lead following loose marking by Jon Wyatt, allowing a cross from Sven Meinhardt to drift through to the German captain, Klaus Michler, who opened their account.

Britain responded immediately, winning two penalty corners but, although they introduced Simon Hazlitt into their corner drill, they were unable to penetrate the German defences. Both Calum Giles' efforts were driven into the German goalkeeper, Michael Knauth, although the second fell to Wyatt who seemed taken by surprise and missed an opportunity which might have kept Britain in the game.

With only a single goal separating the sides at the interval, a German flurry of three goals in 13 minutes destroyed Britain. It was an aerial bombardment from deep in the German defence which created the problems.

First, Michael Waldhauser set up goals for Meinhardt and Christian Blunck before scoring himself, with Patric Bellenbaum completing the rout. Wyatt made amends for his first-half miss at Britain's third penalty corner to claim a late consolation.

A disappointed British coach, Jon Copp, said afterwards: "We contributed to our own downfall and after some solid play in the first half it was particularly disappointing." After today's rest day Britain face Pakistan tomorrow, when it is difficult to see what they can do to restore confidence.

GREAT BRITAIN: S Mason (Reading); P McGuire (Teddington), J Wyatt (Reading), J Halls (Old Loughtonians), Soma Singh (Southgate); R Garcia (Polo Barcelona), Kalbir Takher (Cannock), J Laslett (Teddington, capt); C Mayer (Cannock), D Hall (Guildford), N Thompson (Old Loughtonians). Substitutes used: J Shaw (Southgate), C Giles (Havant), S Hazlitt (Hounslow), R Thompson (Hounslow).

GERMANY: M Knauth; C Fischer; C Mayerhofer, V Fried, M Green; P Bellenbaum, C Blunck, K Michler (capt); S Meinhardt, M Waldhauser, A Becker. Substitutes used: O Domke, J-P Tewes, B Michel, C Bechmann.

Umpires: A Amin (Eg), P von Reth (Neth).