Under the hazy skies of historic Edinburgh
the first of the three test match series began.
Canada started this match with the squad
not having three players available to play. Notwithstanding a shortened roster they
were able to earn a couple of good entries into the Scottish circle, but were
unable to convert.
In the 7th minute Scotland was
able to get the ball into the Canadian circle and generate a short corner. Devohn Texeira however ran it down and
deflected the ball clear of the goal.
This seemed to pick up the Canadians as
they started to generate some more successful attack.
By the 16th minute this work was
rewarded when Canada generated a turn over and Keegan Pereira, getting possession,
drove hard into the Scottish circle. He effectively drew the attention of the
Scottish defence and deftly passed the ball over to Philip Wright who was able
to slot the ball past the goalie for Canada’s first goal.
To the Scots credit, they continued to
press on against the Canadians and started to benefit from a number of Canadian
turn overs. By the 22nd minute they were able create another short
This time Daniel Coultas, playing in his
first international match for Scotland, unleashed a drag flick that was hard
and accurate to the high glove side of the Canadian goal and tied the game up.
Canada, against the run of play was able to
generate their only short corner for the half at the 29th minute. Hopes of Canada restoring their lead were
dashed by a mishandled pullout and stick stop.
With Canada unable to convert any of their
subsequent entries into the Scottish circle either into short corners or goals
the first half ended 1 – 1.
The second half started with Canada still
In the 39th minute, Chris
Grassick of Scotland was able to enter the top of the Canadian circle and
unleash a low hard backhand shot that found the back of the Canadian net.
This goal shook the team and responded by
one minute later earning a short corner. The resulting drag flick was on goal,
but the Scottish keeper made a sound low stick side save.
Under constant reminders for Canada to hold
to the game plan and build on their structure and strength they started to
create some sustained pressure on the Scots.
In the 53rd minute Mark Pearson
penetrated the Scottish circle down the left side and accurately passed the
ball over to Matt Guest who coolly redirected the ball into the Scottish goal
levelling the game 2 – 2.
Momentum continued to build for the
Canadians and in the 56th minute Canada got its second short corner
of the half. The drag flick was unable to find the mark and missed the goal
high and wide on the goalies glove side.
To the frustration of Coach D’Abreo, the
Canadian team structure started to break down and created many turnovers. This
allowed the Scots lots of room in the middle to operate and generate a short
corner of their own at the 65th minute. Dave Carter rose to the
challenge and made a good stick save and deflected the ball away from the
The however, continued to take advantage of
too many turnovers and maintained pressure in the Canadian end.
In the 68th minute their work
was rewarded with another short corner. Again the Scottish relied on Daniel
Coultas. This time his drag flick
headed for the goalies glove side, deflected of Mark Pearsons shin guard and
was redirected past Dave Carter low to the stick side.
With Canada now down 3 – 2 they pressed
hard but were unable to equalize in the last two minutes of the game and
Scottish claimed the victory.
Canada plays the second of its three
matches against Scotland on April 24, 2011 at the same venue in Edinburgh.
DNP: Toni Kindler