FIH Pro League Scouting Report: USWNT vs. Great Britain

March 30, 2019, 9:55 a.m. (ET)

In anticipation of the U.S. Women's National Team's upcoming FIH Pro League match, here is a scouting report you’ll want to review before the starting whistle.

Game Day: Sunday, March 31, 2019

Time: 6:00 p.m. ET

Location: Spooky Nook Sports, Lancaster, Pa.

Live StreamDon't miss a second of the FIH Pro League action and watch the USWNT take on Great Britain this Sunday! The FIH has signed a four-year media rights agreement with Bleacher Report Live for the territories of Canada and the United States. Bleacher Report Live is operated by Turner Sports, a division of WarnerMedia. The platform, which is Turner’s live sports streaming service, will be the primary destination for all fans to watch FIH Pro League matches.

FIH Pro League single games are available paid per view for $2.99 per match or $19.99 for the FIH Pro League 2019 Season Pass (all matches)Click here for the FIH Pro League live stream landing page.

Opponent: Great Britain

FIH World Ranking: 2

Head to Head: These two teams have battled it out several times in recent years on some of hockey’s biggest stages. In their last meeting at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games preliminary round, after USA led 1-0 heading into the final quarter, Great Britain tied the game off a penalty corner in the 53rd minute before following up with the game-winning goal moments later by Alex Danson on a redirect play to win it 2-1. A few months prior, USA and Great Britain met at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London in the 2016 Women’s Hockey Champions Trophy. Deadlocked 0-0 after the first half, USA scored twice to win 2-0 against the host nation.

In 2015 the two squads met in a four-game test series in Marlow, England where USA finished with two ties and two losses.

Head to Head
(since 2013)

3 Previous Matches
1 Draws
1 Won 1
5 Total Goals 4

What You Need to Know: The Olympic champions of Rio 2016 have set their sights on defending their title at Tokyo 2020, and a strong showing in the inaugural edition of the FIH Pro League would be an important step along the road toward achieving that goal. With Olympic gold medal-winning Head Coach Danny Kerry switching to the England and Great Britain men’s program, David Ralph stepped up from Assistant Coach on an interim basis. However, it was recently announced that former Australian international Mark Hager had left his position as Head Coach of New Zealand’s Black Sticks to become the head coach of England and Great Britain’s women. The initial FIH Pro League squad contains six players who were on the podium at Rio 2016: defensive trio Hollie Pearne-Webb, Giselle Ansley and Laura Unsworth, midfielder Susannah Townsend and forwards Sophie Bray and Lily Owsley. While fellow Olympic gold medalists Alex Danson and ace goalkeeper Maddie Hinch are both taking a break from international hockey, there are plenty of other wonderful players on the roster, including Hannah Martin, a pacey attacker with enough skill to hurt any team in the world.

While the majority of the Great Britain squad is made up of players who represent England, there is also a trio of Scots selected in the shape of Sarah Robertson, Amy Costello and goalkeeper Nicola Cochrane.

Recap of Great Britain's Previous Game: Great Britain’s women claimed their first points of the FIH Pro League thanks to a shootout victory over host nation China in Changzhou. The Olympic champions took a 3-2 win in the one-on-ones, giving the Europeans a bonus point in addition to the point both teams earned when regular time ended with the score locked at 2-2.

China and Great Britain came into this match, the first FIH Pro League fixture to take place in Asia, searching for their first points in the competition, with both nations having suffered defeats in Oceania at the hands of New Zealand and Australia. 

No. 10 China enjoyed the better of the first period and took a deserved 1-0 lead over No. 2 Great Britain into the quarter-time break thanks to a late strike from Liang Meiyu, who produced a brilliant volley to fire home after an initial save from goalkeeper Amy Tennant.

The Rio 2016 Olympic Games champions looked like a completely different side in the second period and hit back with two goals in quick succession. Twenty-year-old Lizzie Neal restored parity with a cool finish on her backhand, guiding her sweep-shot inside the right post for her first international goal before Giselle Ansley put Great Britain into a 2-1 lead when her unstoppable penalty corner drag-flick sailed into the top right corner.

There was no change to the score in a relatively cagey third quarter, although Tennant was twice called into action when Yong Jing and Zhong Jiaqi threatened.

In a bid to salvage the match, China replaced their goalkeeper with an outfield player with six minutes to go. It was a tactic that almost backfired when Great Britain went close twice, the second of which saw Player of the Match Lily Owsley crash a backhand shot into the side-netting with three minutes remaining.

However, a rare mistake from the excellent Anna Toman with two minutes left to play resulted in a penalty corner to China. It was a chance that the home side would not waste, with Gu Bingfeng hit a penalty corner into bottom left corner to deny the visitors all three points and force a shoot-out.

The one-on-ones proved to be the perfect place for Toman to atone for her earlier error, scoring the winning goal after Amy Tennant produced a superb goalkeeping display to deny Zhang Jinrong, Wang Na and He Jiangxin.  

Great Britain's Roster: Click Here