Otago Daily Times

Pos­i­tives for Otago de­spite over­all re­sult

HOCKEY

- ADRIAN SECONI Sports · Otago Region · Dylan Thomas · Cameron Douglas

SUN­DAY, bloody Sun­day.

Otago had a firm grip on the in­au­gu­ral Main­land Cup af­ter the open­ing day of com­pe­ti­tion on Satur­day.

The home teams did bet­ter than ex­pected against their Can­ter­bury op­po­nents. They won three of their four games at the McMil­lan Hockey Cen­tre.

The Otago women pro­vided per­haps the big­gest sur­prise, beat­ing Can­ter­bury 6­1.

The Otago men won 4­0 and the un­der­18 men pre­vailed 4­3.

The vis­it­ing side recorded a com­fort­able 7­1 win in the un­der­18 women’s match and then bounced back to win all four games yes­ter­day.

The un­der­18 women won 6­0 to com­plete an im­pres­sive week­end. The un­der­18 men’s side won 2­1 and the Can­ter­bury women’s side scored late to reg­is­ter a 2­1 win.

In the fi­nal game, Can­ter­bury and Otago were locked 3­3 at full­time but Can­ter­bury won the shootout to com­plete a clean sweep on day two.

Otago Hockey path­ways man­ager Hymie Gill summed up the week­end rather nicely.

‘‘Yes­ter­day was bet­ter than to­day but over­all it has been a good week­end,’’ he said mo­ments af­ter the Can­ter­bury men sealed a shootout win.

‘‘Re­al­is­ti­cally, we’re not wor­ried about re­sults at the mo­ment. We played for a cup to­day but we are more in­ter­ested in the de­vel­op­ment of our play­ers and how we are go­ing to play in the fu­ture.

‘‘We are set­ting our­selves a play­ing style that is go­ing to help us be­come com­pet­i­tive in the tour­na­ments com­ing up and we’ve got some good young play­ers float­ing around.’’

Gill said the Otago women’s win on Satur­day came as ‘‘a big sur­prise’’.

‘‘We hadn’t been ex­pect­ing a re­sult in that one.’’

And af­ter the Otago men’s con­vinc­ing open­ing win it was a sur­prise Can­ter­bury was able to turn the ta­bles.

‘‘I think the boys were think­ing the game was go­ing to be eas­ier than it was.

‘‘Ob­vi­ously, Can­ter­bury is a good team and they played a lot faster and at a higher in­ten­sity and that caught us on the hop a lit­tle.’’

Can­ter­bury scored in the open­ing few min­utes thanks to a de­fen­sive blun­der at the back and led 2­0 af­ter the first quar­ter.

Dy­lan Thomas struck back be­fore the half­time break. Finn Ward made a nice pass and Thomas’ ini­tial shot was saved but he rammed in the re­bound.

Jor­dan Ward slot­ted in a penalty cor­ner in the third quar­ter to tie the score.

But Can­ter­bury took the lead again early in the fi­nal spell. Cameron Dou­glas, who had a strong game, found the back of the net.

Charles Dar­ling was on hand to slap in a re­bound and equalise for Otago.

How­ever, Can­ter­bury was more clin­i­cal in the shootout, scor­ing all four at­tempts to seal the win.

 ?? PHOTO PETER MCIN­TOSH ?? Hav­ing a crack . . . Otago’s Tay­lor Duffy takes a shot dur­ing a rep­re­sen­ta­tive match against Can­ter­bury at the McMil­lan Hockey Cen­tre yes­ter­day.
PHOTO PETER MCIN­TOSH Hav­ing a crack . . . Otago’s Tay­lor Duffy takes a shot dur­ing a rep­re­sen­ta­tive match against Can­ter­bury at the McMil­lan Hockey Cen­tre yes­ter­day.

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