Ireland tie with Canada to claim Three Nations in Dusseldorf

Three Nations Tournament, Dusseldorf
Ireland 1 (K Mullan) Canada 1 (N Sourisseau)
Ireland got the draw they needed to win the Three Nations tournament in Dusseldorf, adding a tie with the Canucks to Thursday’s win over Germany.

Katie Mullan set Ireland on course for the draw. Pic: Adrian Boehm

Ireland got off to the ideal start as Katie Mullan put her side in front inside the opening three minutes. A cool head from Ali Meeke saw her skip away from two defenders to lay the ball back to Shirley McCay who sent a pin-point sweep to Mullan at the top of the circle.

Mullan then slipped her marker and fired a rocket into the corner on her reverse.

Canada built up decent periods of possession but didn’t threaten the Irish circle in the opening quarter. The Green Army got their first penalty corner in the 20th minute but Lena Tice’s sweep was well run down by the Canadian first runner.

A second corner followed minutes later and the slip at the top of the circle saw Chloe Watkins put the ball past Kaitlyn Williams but the goal was disallowed for obstruction.

Ayeisha McFerran had to be alert in the opening minutes of the second half as Stephanie Norlander found herself alone on the penalty spot when the pass came in but the Louisville keeper came sliding out to make the save.

But in the 35th minute Natalie Sourisseau got the equaliser for Canada as she demonstrated some good skill to find herself a gap in a crowded circle and scored on her reverse.

The Green Army won another corner, this time Anna O’Flanagan the instigator, but the Canadian defense cleared the shot. McFerran made another smart save with her boot as Brienne Stairs looked to almost walk the ball into the goal.

O’Flanagan came inches away from giving Ireland the lead as she pirouetted away from her marker but her snapshot just skimmed past the far post.

Canada notched up a couple of corners but they didn’t trouble the Irish defense and the Green Army created the better of the chances in the dying phases but the final touch just evaded them, and they shared the spoils with Canada.

Ireland’s final match of the series is against Germany tomorrow (June 24) in Dusseldorf at 12pm (Irish time) before final World Cup selection on Tuesday.

Ireland: Y O’Byrne, N Evans, K Mullan, S McCay, E Beatty, G Pinder, A McFerran, H Matthews, A O’Flanagan, Z Wilson, A Meeke
Subs: G O’Flanagan, E Tice, N Carroll, S Loughran, C Watkins, L Colvin, D Duke

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