Junior World Cup Hockey: Malaysia top Pool D, New Zealand finish second

New Delhi: An impressive Malaysia scored two goals on either side of the break to shut the door on England with a 4-2 win in their last league encounter at the Hero Junior Men’s Hockey World Cup at the Major Dhyan Chand Stadium, here on monday.

The win also enabled Malaysians to finish on top of Group D followed by New Zealand who beat South Africa by a solitary goal.

In the Malaysia versus England encounter, Mohd Bin Hashim (15th minute) converted a penalty corner to put Malaysia ahead before Firhan Ashari scored a field goal.

Luke Taylor then converted a set piece in the 31st minute to pull one back for England as Malaysia went into the breather with a 2-1 lead.

After the cross over, Malaysia scored two field goals through Muhammad Bin Baharom (44th) and skipper Fitri Saari (57th) to extend their lead to 4-1.

Phil Roper reduced the margin for England in the 65th minute by converting another penalty corner, but Malaysian defence managed to hold on to secure their third straight win in then tournament.

Malaysia, who were already assured of a place in the knock-out phase ahead of today?s encounter, will now face the second-placed team from Pool C, which would be either India or hosts Korea, in the quarterfinals on Thursday.

Meanwhile in the second match of Pool D today, New Zealand rode on a penalty corner conversion in the 44th minute from Kane Russell to beat South Africa by a 1-0 margin in the must-win match and progress to the quarterfinals of the mega-event.

The Black Sticks in all likelihood will play Netherlands in the quarterfinals on Thursday.

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