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Spain trounce New Zealand
December 07, 2004 14:09 IST
Spain got themselves a step closer to the final of the Champions Trophy hockey tournament beating New Zealand 3-1 in a league match at Lahore on Tuesday.
Quite like their first two matches, Spain played cautiously in the first half before upping the ante after the break to slam in all their goals and take their points tally to nine from three games.
Pau Quemada (40th and 54th minute) scored a brace, while promising Santiago Freixa added to the tally in the 63rd minute.
New Zealand, who suffered third defeat in a row, scored their solitary goal through Darren Smith through a penalty corner conversion in the 46th minute.
New Zealand showed a lot of promise in the early part of the match but failed to deliver as their opponents were uncontrollable in the second half.
The Kiwis successfully avoided conceding any goal to Spain before the break and even when the Olympic semi-finalists took the lead five minutes into the second half they bounced back well to level the score.
But their inexperience was exposed by the Spaniards as the match progressed and coach Maurits Hendriks' boys romped home to collect full points from the game.
Incidentally, this was Spain's first win over New Zealand in a Champions Trophy match. In the previous two meetings between the two teams, New Zealand beat Spain once, while the other match was drawn.