They may have secured their place at next year’s Olympic Games in Rio but Great Britain’s women’s hockey team are determined to complete the job in Valencia by bringing home gold, according to goalkeeper Maddie Hinch.
Great Britain needed to finish inside the top three at the World Hockey League Semi Finals in Spain to book their ticket to Brazil next year.
That target was achieved on Saturday evening as Lily Owsley’s first goal of the competition following a fine flowing team move saw them narrowly beat Germany 1-0 to progress into the gold medal match against China on Sunday.
But while Great Britain had gone into the game with five consecutive wins on the spin, scoring 12 and conceding just two in the process, they were given a stern test by the Germans, with a number of late saves from Hinch in particular preserving the one goal advantage.
However Owsley’s seventh-minute goal would eventually prove enough and Hinch, who was not a part of Great Britain’s bronze medal-winning team of London 2012, believes the hard work is starting to pay dividends.
“Words can’t really describe the feeling. We came here with qualification in our mind and we’ve taken it one game at a time and done a job,” she said.
“To reach a final and book a spot at Rio, we can’t be happier. We’ve got a great team back home and an incredible goalkeeper coach in John Hurst, so I felt good coming into this competition and once the nerves settled I enjoyed myself.
“You can’t fault us. We’re hard to score against and we’ve scored some nice goals.
“At the minute we’re learning and making progress and we’ll keep doing so. I’m excited for the future.
“I would never say the pressure is off. There is a gold medal to win tomorrow and we’re here to take it.”
© Sportsbeat 2015