Oakham School teacher Ellie Watton came off the replacements bench during England women’s opening loss at the 2014 Rabobank World Cup in the Netherlands yesterday (Sunday).
England lost 2-1 to the United States in their first game of the tournament.
The USA came into the tournament off the back of a great win in the Champions Challenge back in April and they looked like a side in form in the first 35 minutes as they scored twice from penalty corners through Paige Selenski and Kelsey Kolojejchick.
England created chances and had several penalty corners, but Jackie Kintzer in the USA goal stopped everything that came at her.
Kintzer and her defence were under pressure for much of the second half and eventually England found a way through with Captain Kate Richardson-Walsh on target from a penalty corner. Despite pushing hard and even switching to 11 outfield players right at the end the USA held on to their advantage to seal the victory and take the three points.
Attacker Watton, 24, who lives in Oakham, came off the bench as England head coached Jason Lee searched for a goal.
But the Beeston player could not help England avoid defeat.
Lee said: “We’re very disappointed with the result. I don’t think it has to derail our ambitions for the rest of the tournament, in many ways it focuses our minds a little bit more as we’re running out of slip room.
“Fundamentally we didn’t start particularly well. The first ten minutes didn’t reflect our ability at all. America took two well worked corners and from then on we were chasing the game. I think we created a lot of good opportunities. Their corner defence was good but on another day we might have taken our chances and won the game.”
“I felt quite confident at half time we would score goals and hoped we’d get enough but it wasn’t to be. I think we’ve learned that how we start is crucial and as I said it could’ve done us a favour because we now have no choice in the second game, we have to hit our straps from the first second.”
England’s next game is against China tomorrow at midday.
It will be shown live on Sky Sports 3. Coverage starts at 11.30am.
England are currently ranked number three in the world and must finish in the top two of a group that also includes: South Africa, Argentina and Germany to reach the semi-finals.
England women’s World Cup fixtures
June 3: v China (midday)
June 6: v South Africa (1pm)
June 8: v Argentina (3pm)
June 10: v Germany (3pm)