High margins in the first round of matches at the Standard Chartered Bank FIH Junior Men's World Cup today gave a first indication of where teams stand.
In pool A, Pakistan were flattered by their 7-2 win over Russia. For a big part of the game, the Russians were able to keep the Greenshirts near, but in the final quarter of an hour, they were no longer able to keep up and had to watch the score soar. In the other pool A encounter, Belgium struggled with their Egyptian opponents and the humidity but were eventually also able to book a comprehensive win and the promise for more.
Pool B's Germany took a while to find their way into their encounter with Chile but nonetheless eventually pushed the scoreline to a clear and convincing 5-0, which makes them the first evening's pool B table leader, while Japan and South Africa played seventy minutes focussed mainly on defending and parted ways splitting points after a 1-1 draw to pull into joint second place.
In pool C, Korea crushed the USA 7-0 for a clear table lead, while in the last game of the day in Johor Bahru, the Malaysian home team took on England in a stadium filled beyond capacity, and delighted the big and enthusiastic crowd with a 1-0 win. In a battle of power versus skill and speed, Malaysia benefitted from a first half penalty corner goal and England's inability to convert their chances for an important three points in pool C.
In pool D, New Zealand's exceptionally talented captain Simon Child led the Junior Blacksticks to an 8-1 win over Poland, scoring half the goals himself, but the Kiwis still trail the Netherlands in the table who cruised to an 8-0 defeat of hosts Singapore today.
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