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WFCQ AOFC - Different day, same winners – 30.01.2014

Day 2 at WFCQ AOFC ended with Australia and Japan again taking the points from the two games today. They now both sit at the top of the standings table and tomorrow´s match between them will possibly decide the final winner of this group and will secure a spot in the WFC Final round for one of them.

There isn´t any sport where a New Zealand v Australia match doesn´t create a fierce competition, and today´s match was no different. Australia took the win with a big score of 12-1, but it was tough match for both teams.

Australia were clearly the stronger of the two teams, maintaining over 80% of the possession and forcing the Kiwis to spend most of the game in their own defensive area. However, it wasn´t all one way traffic and New Zealand really made Australia work hard for their goals and the two points.

The opening goal went to Australia and came from a lovely passing combination behind the New Zealand goal that moved the ball to Nicholas Moran who had found space right in front of the net.  Australia followed up with another two quick goals to put the score out to 3-0. The first of these came in a powerplay, the second from a long-range shot by Oliver Diffen - his first international goal for the men´s team.

The Australians kept up the scoring to take the scoreboard to 12-0, the goals made by 9 different scorers. New Zealand hung in the match right to the end and rewarded their loyal spectators when they scored with just 6 seconds left on the clock. Lewis Taiapa-Skinnon was the man to bring the crowd to it´s feet, scoring his first international goal.

Best Players:
New Zealand - Daniel Jones
Australia - Nicholas Moran

 

Singapore v Japan

Japan moved a step closer to securing their spot in Gothenburg with a 6-3 win over Singapore, however, with games against Australia and Korea still ahead of them, nothing is certain.

Singapore tried to play fast, modern floorball. They were agile and technically skilled but lacked the tactical and match experience to beat Japan. They were also probably a little jet-lagged after only arriving in New Zealand early this morning after problems with their flights & luggage.

Japan were the first to score when Syunsuke Tabata found a way past the Singapore goalkeeper, Kai Xiang Yeo, with the clock at 07:08. Singapore surprised Japan with a quick reply with a goal from Alvin Tan  and then found themselves with a player advantage for 5 minutes when Tabata was penalised for a poor tackle on the boards. A combination of an ineffective powerplay against well-organised Japanese short-handed play meant that there was no addition to the score during the penalty, and the teams went to the first break at 1-1.

 

Shohei Kurata gave Japan a great start to the second period with an early goal and when they extended their lead to 3-1 at around the half way mark of the game, it looked like Japan were starting to gain control. Singapore though kept fighting, bringing it back to a one goal difference with Yusuf Zainudin scoring his first international goal in a delayed penalty. Japan quickly cancelled out this goal with another of their own and the period ended at 4-2.

It was Singapore´s turn to get the fast goal to start the last period, but Japan continued to withstand the pressure and extended their lead to 6-3. Singapore had their chances with powerplay opportunities but couldn´t convert from either of them. Japan´s defence, especially #9 Kenichi Ogawa, controlled the ball well in their own area and created fast turning attacks for his forwards, not giving Singapore too many chances to score.

Best Players:
Singapore -
Jian Hong Lim
Japan - Shohei Kurata

 

  Match Photos on Flickr

 Match Replay on YouTube

Photo: Masanori Udagawa