Hockey: NZ men defeat Trinidad and Tobago

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Source- NZPA

Arun Panchia of New Zealand controls the ball. Photo / Getty ImagesA mix of penalty corner power and some slick outfield play saw the New Zealand men's hockey team ease to a predictable win against Trinidad and Tobago in their opening match at the Commonwealth Games in New Delhi today.

Three of New Zealand's goals in the 7-1 win came from penalty corners as the power of defenders Andy Hayward (2) and Hayden Shaw proved too much for Trinidad and Tobago to handle.

New Zealand, ranked 7th in the world and third in the Commonwealth compared to Trinidad and Tobago's rankings of 27th and 10th, respectively, also scored four neatly constructed field goals through Blair Hilton - who bagged two, one either side of halftime - Hugo Inglis and Nick Haig, who returned from a knee injury.

But after Shaw had lashed in his first goal to open the scoring, it was Trinidad and Tobago who provided the individual play of the match when they equalised midway through the second half.

Wayne Legerton was seemingly trapped on the sideline but a mazy run, in which he beat five New Zealand defenders, ended with a cracking shot to draw them level against the run of play.

Perhaps stung by their lazy defending, New Zealand responded immediately, with striker Nick Wilson jinking his way through the defence and firing a shot which was saved, but the rebound was easily tucked away by Hugo Inglis.

Blair Hilton made it 3-1 at halftime, the striker scoring despite his team being a man down with Steve Edwards forced to spend two minutes in the sinbin after a stick clash.

Shaw and Hayward scored from penalty corners soon after the break before Hilton and Haig rounded out the scoring with well-taken individual efforts.

New Zealand's remaining group B matches are against Canada, England and South Africa.

New Zealand 7 (Andy Hayward 2, Blair Hilton 2, Hugo Inglis, Hayden Shaw, Nick Haig) Trinidad and Tobago 1 (Wayne Legerton). Halftime: 3-1.


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