Junior Black Sticks finish fifth in Malaysia

20:40, Nov 18 2012

The men's junior Black Sticks have finished fifth at the Sultan of Johor Cup after a 2-1 extra time victory over hosts Malaysia.

Malaysia took a 1-0 lead in the second half but Jared Panchia equalised and Kane Russell then scored off New Zealand's only penalty corner of the match, in the second minute of extra time.

Malaysia were awarded nine penalty corners throughout the game, but only converted one, with goalkeeper Sam Greaney keeping New Zealand in the game.

"Our passing improved throughout the game, we moved the ball effectively in the last quarter and were able to hold the ball under pressure," said coach Grant Edwards, who felt the tournament had been a good opportunity for the players to experience international competition.

"All athletes will need to significantly improve their core skills of passing and receiving as we look towards the Junior World Cup in India," he said.

Germany won the tournament, with India second.

The Oceania zone Junior World Cup qualifiers are on the Gold Coast in February. Other teams competing in the qualifier are Australia, Papua New Guinea and Samoa, with the top two to progress to the Junior World Cup next December.

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