The Hockey Series Final is the second stage in the FIH Olympic Qualification process. Canada’s Men’s National Team has been placed in a tournament taking place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on April 26-May 4, 2019. It will be an eight-team competition featuring Canada, Austria, Brazil, China, Italy, Malaysia, Vanuatu, Wales. The top two teams from each Hockey Series Finals event will advance to the next stage featuring two qualification matches. ROSTER/PREVIEW
|Canada vs Wales||1-3 LOSS||April 26, 2019||4pm|
|Canada vs Austria||2-1 WIN||April 27, 2019||6pm|
|Canada vs Belarus||6-2 WIN||April 29, 2019||2pm|
|Canada vs China (QF)||4-3 (3-1 SO) WIN||May 1, 2019||5:45pm|
|Canada vs Italy (SF)||3-1 WIN||May 3, 2019||5:45pm|
|Canada vs Malaysia (Championship)||3-2 WIN||May 4, 2019||8pm|
FULL MATCH SCHEDULE: FIH Series Finals – Kuala Lumpur
2pm Local Time –> 11pm (the day before) PDT –> 2am (same day) EDT
4pm Local Time –> 1am (same day) PDT –> 4am (same day) EDT
6pm Local Time –> 3am (same day) PDT –> 6am (same day) EDT
8pm Local Time –> 5am (same day) PDT –> 8am (same day) EDT
It was far from a dream start to any tournament for Team Canada as they dropped their opening match against Wales 3-1. The Welsh came out with heavy pressure and jumped on the Canadians in the first half. Wales took a 1-0 lead into the second half and added to it in the first minute of the third quarter. Throughout the game, Wales went 2/3 on penalty corners, a telling stat at the end of the match.
Canada applied the pressure in the second half, bringing the game back to 2-1. Canada’s lone goal was scored by Iain Smythe as he deflected in a cross-goal pass from Keegan Pereira late in the third quarter. But that was as close as they would get as Wales added another PC goal in the fourth to put the dagger on Canada’s comeback chances. Canada will take a 0-1 record into tomorrow’s game against Austria and look to get back on the winning foot.
Canada came out firing after yesterday’s 3-1 upset loss to Wales. Canada attacked with more pressure and defended desperately in what felt like a must-win game against Austria. The first half was back and forth action of the teams trading chances. As they walked off the pitch for the first half break, neither team had any goals to show for their efforts.
Canada’s Jamie Wallace opened the scoring right at the opening of the second half. Keegan Pereira feathered a nice pass through, Wallace took it on the reverse and quickly got the ball up and over the Austrian keeper for the first goal of the game. Austria pushed back, as expected, but Canada withstood the pressure and stood their ground on the backs of captain Scott Tupper and goalkeeping from David Carter.
Late in the third quarter, Pereira dug the ball loose after Brenden Bissett entered the circle and smashed Canada’s second goal past the Austrian Keeper. The two-goal third frame put Canada in the driver’s seat and even though Austria solved Carter in the fourth, the Canadians took the much-needed victory 2-1. The win put Canada back on track in their pool. Lots of action left in Kuala Lumpur as the competition rolls towards bracket play.
Canada takes on Belarus in their final pool-play game on Monday. Tune in live to watch at 11pm PDT (Sunday).
Canada came into their final pool play match with three goals to their name. In order to advance out of their pool, they needed a win and a convincing win could see them top the table. Canada filled the net against Belarus capitalizing six times and defeating the Belarussians 6-2. The four-goal differential still won’t be enough for Canada to top the pool, but they will move forward in the tournament to the quarterfinals.
David Carter was stellar between the pipes, making early saves when Canada’s defense was a little shaky. The all-out assault was on display for the majority of the game. Brenden Bissett notched a pair of goals, Jamie Wallace scored his second in as many games and Oliver Scholfield scored a diving goal in his 50th senior cap. Iain Smythe and Scott Tupper rounded out the goal-scorers.
The 6-2 victory puts Canada through to the quarterfinals. Coming out second place in a three-way tie, Canada will face China in the quarterfinals. Italy and Austria, the winners of the two pools will get a bye through to the semi finals. The other quarterfinal will feature Wales and Malaysia. Canada’s game against China will take place at 5:45pm on May 1.
With China scoring a penalty corner inside the first five minutes, Canada faced an immediate uphill battle in the FIH Series Finals quarterfinals. Canada pushed back and tied the game right at the start of the second quarter as Oliver Scholfield was the right person on the spot to reach up and deflect the rebound into the goal off a Jamie Wallace effort.
Canada faced China last year in July at home for a five-game series on home soil in Vancouver. Of those five games, Canada won three, drew one and lost one. Ranked 10th vs China’s 14th, Canada had the slight edge heading into this evening’s tilt. But as anyone knows, the stats and history don’t mean too much once the ball is dropped and the match is on.
With the score tied at one goal apiece heading into the second half, Canada knew that had to take their game to the next level if they were going to book a spot in the tournament semifinals. Despite some great possession hockey and a variety of chances, China was equal to the task and offered a fast-paced counter and fast-break attack,- READ FULL RECAP
Canada, the tenth ranked team in the world; vs Italy, the 32nd ranked team at the world: The winner, an automatic berth in the next leg of Olympic qualification. It didn’t take long for Canada to assert their dominance and show their experience, carrying most of the possession and earning the first PC of the game. Late in the first, Italy pushed back with a flurry of chances of their own. After a stellar Late in the second quarter, Italy earned a pair of penalty corners, David Carter made two stellar saves on the first PC effort, but Italy capitalized on the second one, breaking the deadlock and taking a 1-0 lead into the second half.
Canada answered back in the third quarter as Gordon Johnston entered the circle and played the ball on net. Sukhi Panesar was in the right place at the right time to bang the ball into the open net off a deflection his way, tying the game at one goal apiece. Canada pressed for more at the end of the third quarter, earning four penalty corner chances and finally Johnston rifled a rocket past the Italian keeper to give Canada their first lead of the game.
Being one quarter away from a spot in the finals and an automatic place in the final leg of Olympic qualification, Canada continued to apply the pressure. They were forced to play a man down with Johnston out with a green card, but they weathered the storm and pressed back. Playing smart defensively and taking calculated attacking opportunities, Canada kept the ball largely in the Italian zone in the final 10 minutes of the game. Canada limited Italy’s final push and denied the chance for any late-game drama. Oliver Scholfield added a late marker for Canada to clinch the game and the berth in the tournament final. – READ FULL RECAP
CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH – [CANADA 3 – 2 MALAYSIA]
The capacity crowd at the national hockey stadium was treated to an early home-team goal that set the stage for a wild evening of hockey in Kuala Lumpur as the FIH Series Finals came to a close. Canada and Malaysia, the two top teams in the tournament met in the finals after failing to win their groups. Malaysia advanced through Austria in the semifinal and Canada defeated Italy, setting up a one-two matchup in the final.
Since 2011, Canada has only defeated Malaysia in regular time once and in a shootout a pair of times. Most recently, Malaysia defeated Canada twice at the 2019 Azlan Shah Cup. The home-team took the lead and handled much of the possession in the first quarter. Canada pushed back in the second quarter earning four penalty corners and capitalized on two of the them. Canadian captain, Scott Tupper scored the first PC goal on a classic drag-flick and Brenden Bissett scored the second on a beautiful set piece deflection. The two goals came within two minutes of each other. Late in the half, Malaysia earned a penalty stroke but failed to hit the target. Canada took a 2-1 lead into the second half. – READ FULL RECAP
Field Hockey Canada is thrilled to partner with Royal Bank of Canada for the 2019 Hockey Series Final. Generous support from RBC has allowed our team to travel and compete on behalf of Canada on the world stage.
For over 70 years, RBC has championed the growth of the Olympic Movement in Canada by supporting grassroots initiatives that give youth access to sport, and by providing the country’s top athletes with the added help they need to reach the Olympic podium. We are proud to extend our support for Canadian athletes through this new partnership with Field Hockey Canada.