Late Hurtz strike breaks Irish hearts
Emily Hurtz struck the only goal for the second game running as Ireland were denied a famous draw against Australia just two minutes from time at Belfield last night.
The rangy winger deflected home the Hockeyroos' sixth penalty corner.
Ireland had the pick of the chances in the first half, Cliodhna Sargent drawing a full-length stick save from Kate Hubble and Shirley McCay battering an upright reverse into the Australian goalkeeper. Louisa Healy -- on her 50th cap -- pulled off a pair of incredible saves, too, first from Amy Korner and then with her head to block Hurtz's second-half effort.
The game appeared to be petering out thereafter but Hurtz struck late, deflecting Nicole Arrold's push into the backboard.
Ireland -- L Healy, N Small, E Cregan, E Smyth, A Speers, N Symmons, M Harvey, A O'Flynn, E Clarke, B Cleland, C Sargent Subs: J O'Halloran, L Jacob, S McCarthy, N Evans.
QUEEN'S UNIVERSITY missed out on the opportunity of a semi-final between their A crew and B crew at Henley Regatta yesterday.
While the A crew enjoyed a narrow victory over Brock University Canada, the B crew couldn't overcome the powerful challenge of Nereus from Holland who won by two and a half lengths in the Temple Challenge Cup.
It wasn't a great day overall for the Irish as the Thames Challenge Cup saw 1829 BC and the New Zealand crew of West End comfortably overcome the challenge of Galway and Carlow respectively.
Mucross also lost out in the Wyfold Challenge Cup when they were beaten by just over two lenghts by London while, in the Britannia Challenge Cup, Cork BC couldn't overcome the powerful force of The Tideway Scullers School who won out by just under two lengths.
Matt Brammeier of the An Post/Sean Kelly team, who last Sunday upstaged the hot favourites Nicholas Roche and Daniel Martin in the National Road Race Championships in Sligo, returns to action this weekend.
Brammeier will be taking part in two single-day races, the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad today followed by the Dwars door het Hageland tomorrow. He will be hoping to continue the team's great run of form in recent weeks by teaming up with fellow Irishmen Mark Cassidy and Connor McConvey for both of the weekend's races.
England are hoping they have tamed Shaun Tait as they seek to restate their supremacy over Australia in today's fifth and final NatWest Series match at Lord's.
Tait's return to one-day internationals, after a 16-month hiatus, has coincided with an Australian resurgence.
"Tait is quick -- and over the first couple of games it has taken us a while to get used to his action again, because the trajectory he fires the ball at is different to most bowlers," said England captain Andrew Strauss.