Hockey: Ashley Jackson rescues slipshod Team GB and admits 'we didn't turn up' against South Africa


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The Independent Online

Ashley Jackson expressed his frustration after scoring twice to spare Great Britain's blushes in a 2-2 draw with unfancied South Africa at the Riverbank Arena yesterday. The 24-year-old opened the scoring from a penalty corner conversion on 14 minutes, having won the corner himself.

However, Great Britain gradually lost control of the game and Austin Smith, the South Africa captain, rattled in a low penalty corner to equalise with 10 minutes remaining. The Africans then went ahead through Jonathan Robinson before Jackson secured the draw.

"I am really disappointed, really annoyed. We covered it up at the end, but it was not a good performance from us. We gave them chances which they then took. They shouldn't be able to live with us. We didn't turn up and let them run the game really," Jackson said.

"No excuses, but there's a big emotional downer after the first game [Monday's 4-1 win over Argentina]. We'd been waiting for the last game for so long, we got the win we were going for and it took a lot out of us.

"We should have won today. It could have been worse, I guess. We could have covered it all up at the end with that corner."

Britain next play Pakistan tomorrow, which Jackson asserts is a must-win game ahead of Sunday night's massive encounter with contender sAustralia. He said: "Australia are the team that are going to steamroller quite a lot of the rest of the teams, and we've got to go toe-to-toe with them."