IIHF IN-LINE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS | GERMANY 2009
GB 5-1 South Africa
Sunday 7th June 2009
Great Britain opened their account at the 2009 IIHF In-Line Hockey World Championships with a comfortable 5-1 victory against South Africa in Group D. With six players making their GB debuts, it was two returning faces from 2008 who took the plaudits with Tim McKay scoring twice and Mark Hallam grabbing a goal and an assist in a steady showing from the 2008 Division One Silver medallists.
Further goals from Chris Colegate and Remi Moses secured an opening day win and GB will go on to face Hungary in their second group game tomorrow.
After flying into Germany yesterday, GB started well out of the blocks and raced to a 3-0 lead in the first period after McKay, Colegate and Hallam all tallied. After a scoreless second period South Africa pulled a goal back through Marais before Moses made it 4-1. McKay added his second in the final period to secure the victory.
Alex Birch shared goaltending duties with James Tanner for GB after the two goalies faced each other only weeks ago in the European Club Championship final. Tanner conceded one goal from fourteen shots in the first two periods, while Birch saved all four shots faced in the second two periods.
“I’m pleased with the win,” admitted GB Head Coach Nick Crawley after the game. “It’s always good to get a victory in your first game of the tournament and now we’ll get some rest before we play Hungary tomorrow.”
Hungary lost a close game to Brazil earlier in the day 4-6, with Australia beating Japan in Group C on penalties with Division One favourites Austria demolishing Chinese Taipei 19-5. The two winners of each group of four will have the opportunity to playoff for promotion on Wednesday before the quarterfinals begin on Thursday.
Full tournament results and stats available at www.iihf.com
Tournament website at www.inlinewm.de