The New Zealand U21 Women’s team took off for tri-series in Canberra where they would take on the best U21 players from Australia and India in a two-round competition.
The New Zealand side featured several players with international experience and they were looking to those players to help them throughout the week-long tournament.
New Zealand got their week started off in the best possible fashion when they stunned the home side Australia 3-1 thanks to goals to Olivia Shannon and a double to Hope Ralph. The side looked composed in the opening match and play some outstanding hockey as the stopped the Australians from finding their way back into the contest.
Next up was India where the side struggled to overcome an against the run of play goal at the end of the first quarter as India would go on to take the contest 2-0.
The New Zealand Women had a day off between their next match and would look to refocus and put in two great performances to finish off the week.
Australia were a renewed team in their second match with New Zealand as they came out firing and put themselves in the lead 2-0 before New Zealand looked to claw their way back into the match with a 53rd minute goal to Olivia Shannon that gave New Zealand a chance at the comeback, unfortunately the Kiwis were unable to overcome the deficit as Australia would score a goal just before the end of the match to take the win 3-1.
Heading into the final match of the week for the Kiwis against an Indian side who still had a chance to win the tournament, New Zealand got themselves on the front foot early when Olivia Shannon scored her third goal of the tournament. India then stormed back into the contest with 4 goals as they would go on to take the match 4-1.
New Zealand Head Coach Katie Glynn commented on the week “We were really happy with how the team played throughout the week, playing in the hot conditions against quality sides who have been preparing for this series for a long time was always going to be tough, The side will return to New Zealand having had the chance to be competitive and grow as hockey players. The team was able to see the bigger picture and played some outstanding hockey throughout the week”.
New Zealand’s Olivia Shannon finished the competition as the leading goal scorer with 3 goals from the 4 matches that she played in.
New Zealand 3 (Olivia Shannon 3 min, Hope Ralph 47, 52 min)
Australia 1 (Aisling Utri)
New Zealand 0
India 2 (Lalrindiki 15 min, Pabhleen Kaur 60 min)
New Zealand 1 (Olivia Shannon 53 min)
Australia 3 (Aisling Utri 19 min, Alice Arnott 40 min, Phillipa Morgan 57 min)
New Zealand 1 (Olivia Shannon 4 min)
India 4 (Sharmila Devi 12, 43 min, Beauty Dung Dung 27 min, Lalrindiki 48 min)