Black Sticks cough up two-goal lead in defeat

MATT RICHENS IN GLASGOW
Last updated 01:03 03/08/2014
Simon Child
ROBERT KITCHIN/Fairfax NZ

DOWN TO THE GROUND: New Zealand's Simon Child dives on the turf to knock a pass away during the Black Sticks' semifinal loss to India.

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Just like the women's team, the New Zealand men's hockey side has spluttered its way out of Commonwealth Games gold medal contention. 

Up 2-0 the Black Sticks looked set for a gold medal showdown with the world No 1 Australians who have won all four Games golds.

But they blew their lead and the match, losing 3-2 to India in Glasgow.

Like the women's team they will now play off for the bronze medal, against and England side which lost 4-1 to Australia. 

New Zealand got off to a perfect start in the Scottish drizzle.

They opened the scoring through Simon Child's third goal of the tournament, after just 90 seconds. 

They were up-beat, were the better of the two sides early and deserved the two-goal lead they picked up in the 17th minute.

India had wasted and lost their referral when Child scored so couldn't dispute the second penalty corner New Zealand were awarded. 

Nick Haig basted the drag-flick into an Indian runner, but the deflection fell straight back to him and the 27-year-old from Canterbury found the back of the net the second time. 

At that stage the game looked won. The Indians were struggling in the cold and wet and were clearly missing inspirational play-maker Sardar Singh after he was suspended for a nasty tackle in pool play. 

India scored their first with a penalty stroke. New Zealand gave away a penalty corner and the powerful strike ploughed into New Zealand captain Dean Couzins' chest on the line.

Their second was a well take deflection by Ramandeep Singh and that was a game-changer. 

India started playing with more purpose and enjoyed periods of domination before they Teenager Akashdeep Singh scored their superbly taken third.

The 19-year-old received a pass deep into New Zealand's circle, pivoted and reversed in a strong shot passed Manchester's out stretched arm. 

New Zealand pushed everything forward and even pulled keeper Manchester off the field, but couldn't score an equaliser.

India 3 (Rupinder Singh, Ramandeep Singh, Akashdeep Singh) New Zealand 2 (Simon Child, Nick Haig). HT: 1-2.

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