Ireland 4-1 Canada
Ireland eased to victory over Canada at the invitational 5 Nations Tournament in Spain thanks to a second-quarter goal rush.
Craig Fulton’s Green Machine are already tuning up for next November's World Cup in India and they impressed in sunny Malaga.
They dominated large chunks of the first half and inside the opening few minutes Peter Caruth saw his shot fly over the crossbar shortly before Julian Dale spun his marker to shoot goalward.
Ireland had the first PC of the match and Dale saw his drag flick saved, but Canada were quick to win their own PC at the other end and Gordon Johnston fired home to give his side the lead against the run of play.
But three goals in the second quarter cemented the Green Machine’s dominance as they pounced on any Canadian mistakes, and duly punished them.
Sean Murray drew the sides level as he blasted his shot goalbound in the 22nd minute, following some silky skills from Shane O’Donoghue to force his way into the circle.
Luke Madeley left Antoni Kindler no chance in the Canadian goal as his drag flick made it 2-1.
Two minutes later and O’Donoghue had put daylight between the sides with a drag flick of his own, flinging it low into the corner out of Kindler’s reach to make it 3-1 on the cusp of half time.
The goals eased up in the second half and Canada tried to launch a comeback early in the third quarter. The sides swapped possession but neither created many real clear-cut chances.
The final goal of the game came right at the end of the third quarter as Caruth, a menace throughout, got his deserved goal.
He managed to throw his stick on the end of Matthew Nelson’s first touch pass and deflected the ball past Kindler into the net.
Canada mustered a few more chances but Ingram was alert to Johnston’s drag to keep the 4-1 score-line intact till the final whistle.
Ireland next face hosts Spain in tomorrow’s fixture at 4pm (Irish time).
Ireland: J Bell, M Bell, C Cargo, J Dale, P Caruth, S O’Donoghue, S Murray, J McKee, C Harte (Captain), L Cole, M Ingram (GK)
Subs: J Carr (GK), L Madeley, S O’Connor, M Nelson, M Robson, J Duncan, S Cole
5 Nations fixtures
30 January: Ireland vs Spain, Carranque, 4pm
1 February: Ireland vs Scotland, CHP Benalmadena, 4pm
3 February: Ireland vs USA in, CHP Benalmadena, 1pm