Ireland have it tough on opening day of women’s EuroHockey Indoors

Ireland suffer defeats to Poland and Belgium in Ourense

Ireland in action during the EuroHockey Indoor Championships II in the Spanish city of Ourense.

Ireland in action during the EuroHockey Indoor Championships II in the Spanish city of Ourense.

 

Ireland endured a tough opening day at the women’s EuroHockey Indoor Championships II in the Spanish city of Ourense, falling to both Poland and Belgium in the six-team round-robin group.

The first tie, though, was a heartening one against the world number six Poles. Hannah Kelly’s penalty corner goal had Ireland 1-0 up at half-time and it was level until four minutes from time courtesy of disciplined, deep defence.

But Poland stayed patient and eventually converted a couple of late corners to run out 4-1 winners.

Game two against Belgium was a rougher outcome with a Joanne Peeters hat-trick underpinning a 9-1 result. Orla Patton’s direct flick had Ireland in the tie at 2-1 going into the second quarter but six second-half goals saw the Belgians turn on the style.

“Obviously, it was a tough day but there was lots to learn,” Patton said of Ireland’s first taste of this level of competition since 1990.

“We were really pleased with our first game this morning, particularly against such a class opposition, going one up.

“Disappointed with the afternoon game but there are positives to take into tomorrow. Our penalty corners are working well and there is a lot of hockey left to play.

“We’ll be looking for good games tomorrow against Switzerland (9am, Irish time) and Scotland (3.15pm) and definitely feel like we can get results from both. Looking forward to it!”

Scotland and Switzerland drew 3-3 to sit just above Ireland in the table after two games each with Belgium and Spain on six points with two wins.

IRELAND: E Buckley, S Patton, S Barnwell, O Fox, O Patton, O Macken, M Regan, H Jenkinson, M Power, H Kelly, L Lloyd, A Benson

EuroHockey Indoor Championships II
Friday results:
Ireland 1 (H Kelly) Poland 4 (P Slawinska 2, A Katerla, S Tatarczuk); Ireland 1 (O Patton) Belgium 9 (J Peeters 3, M Ronquetti 2, C vander Gracht, M Vouche, D Gose, C Closset)

Fixtures
Saturday, January 22nd:
Ireland v Switzerland, 10am; Ireland v Scotland, 4.15pm
Sunday, January 23rd: Spain v Ireland, 1pm

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