Scotland beat Russia to secure Semi-final place.
Following the Pool stages of the World League 2 tournament – and the unfortunate loss to Ukraine – Scotland were drawn to play Russia in the first quarter-final match of the knock-out stages.
It was never going to be an easy task as, having watched Russia play Czech Republic earlier, they appear to be a physical side, who only get more physical as they tire.
Just before the anthems were played Nikki Cochrane was presented with an award for her 50th Cap by Head Coach, Gordon Shepherd.
The match started well with Scotland attacking down the wing. Then two minutes in, the first penalty corner award of the match goes to the Scots and the pre-injection huddle decides the play. However, the first PC was blocked illegally, leading to the second award and the first goal as Edinburgh’s Amy Brodie deflected Robyn Collins’ drag-flick past the keeper.
The next chance for Scotland followed around the 10 minute mark when Millie Brown just failed to wrest the ball from the keeper.
Another sequence of penalties was then awarded around the middle of the half, but both were saved.
The second goal came in the 22nd minute from another Robyn Collins drag-flick, this one finding the top of the net on it’s own, catching the Russian keeper unawares.
The Scots continued to dominate proceedings up to the half time break, but had to play the final minute, or so without Kate Holmes who was green carded for a play-stopping stick tackle.
Scotland continued the third quarter as they had finished the second and had another chance denied by the keeper.
By this time the Russians were getting a bit more physical with their tackling, but the Scots were standing for themselves and the Russians ended up taking some cards, mostly green, but later yellow.
Then just before the end of the quarter, Russia mounted the attack that saw them score as a ball into the ‘D’ found Irina Osipova free from her marker and she fired the ball past Cochrane for 2-1.
Scotland upped their game for the final quarter and nearly scored, but had to make do with the resultant PC, which was eventually cleared. And, as suggested, the Russian side used the size advantage a bit too well and lost to players to yellow in the final quarter.
Job done and into the Semi-finals where they will probably meet Spain for a place in the Final.
Images from the match will appear here over the next few days.