London 2012

Hockey win for GB women

Danson doubles helps Great Britain ease past Japan

Last Updated: 30/07/12 11:55am

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Great Britain: Celebrate against Japan

Great Britain: Celebrate against Japan

Alex Danson was the star of the show with two goals as Great Britain's women's hockey team thrashed Japan 4-0 in their opening Pool A match at the Riverbank Arena on Sunday night.

In front of an expectant near-16,000 capacity crowd, the team showed little stage fright as they produced a confidence-boosting display.

An early goal undoubtedly helped and after Danson struck in the seventh minute goals rained in, somewhat appropriately in the open-air arena which had seen several deluges during the day.

Efforts from Sarah Thomas, Sally Walton and Danson's second followed, while a clean sheet meant GB have still to concede a tournament goal on the blue pitch, this being their fifth outing on the 'Smurf Turf'.

The only downside were late injuries to captain Kate Walsh (face) and Helen Richardson (knee)

Dutch delight

Also in Pool A, defending champions Holland got the defence of their title off to a comfortable start with a 3-0 win over newcomers Belgium as Kim Lammers scored twice on her debut in the tournament.

China also won their game in the group as successful set-pieces helped them gave them to a straightforward 4-0 victory over Korea.

In Pool B, world champions Argentina blew away South Africa 7-1 to underline their credentials as gold medal contenders.

Captain Luciana Aymar, the world's best player, led from the front with two goals - both courtesy of her superb control in the circle - as South Africa were left reeling.

And in the opening match of the day, New Zealand earned a narrow 1-0 victory over Antipodean neighbours Australia.

Cathryn Finlayson scored the only goal of the game in the third minute when she swept home a penalty corner rebound from virtually the Blacksticks' first attack.

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