'Baby' Black Sticks trump Malaysia

Thursday, 05 January 2017 19:55

A youthful Black Sticks lineup were again too good for Malaysia on Tuesday night, prevailing 2-0 in Stratford.

 

The Black Sticks women led 1-0 at halftime through an early Michaela Curtis goal, set up well by Natasha Fitzsimons. A second half strike by Cat Tinings, after she won possession deep in the Malaysian half, sealed the result.

The result could have been more emphatic, but a Deana Ritchie shot was ruled to have found the net a second after the final buzzer.

The visitors rarely threatened, though New Zealand's Erin Goad cleared a shot off the line after a lightning Malaysian counter attack midway through the second half.

This series is being used as a developmental tool by Black Sticks women coach Mark Hagar, and he included debutants Alia Jaques, Megan Hull, Deanna Ritchie and Jess Anderson on Tuesday after picking eight rookies for the first match last Sunday.

The result continued New Zealand's dominance over their Asian rivals, after they won the first test 3-0.

It's a fair reflection of the respective team's prowess, with the Black Sticks ranked No5 in the world and the Malaysian side a lowly 21st.

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