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U.S. Masters Collects Three Wins on Opening Day of WMH World Cup in Cape Town, South Africa

Oct. 01, 2022, 9:32 p.m. (ET)

CAPE TOWN, South Africa - The U.S. Men's and Women's Masters Teams collected a combined three wins on the opening day of the 2022 World Masters Hockey (WMH) World Cup in Cape Town, South Africa. The O-50 Men defeated Singapore, O-55 Men Spirit of Masters topped Ireland and O-65 Women earned a win against Scotland. The O-55 Men fought in a high scoring match against Malaysia to finished tied while the O-45 Men fell to France and the O-60 Women dropped their opening contest to The Netherlands.

Saturday, October 1, 2022

O-45 Men 1 - 5 France 

The U.S. O-45 Men's Masters Team faced a tough France in their opening game. Scoreless after the first quarter, France went on to score three in a 5-minute span, all off penalty corners. In the 39th minute, USA got on the board when Jose Rodriguez (Miami, Fla.) buried a penalty stroke, but France went on to add two more to their lead, both field goals, to claim the 5-1 win.

O-50 Men 1 - 0 Singapore 

The U.S. O-50 Men's Masters Team had a closely contested match with Singapore. The only goal came from a penalty corner earned late in the fourth quarter by Angus Miller (Bedminster, N.J.) on a hard cross by Muru Annamalai (North Tustin, Calif.). Raj Goraya (Kent, Wash.) buried the shot in the left corner after a great stop by Hugo Mazzalupi (Wayne, Pa.) with a perfect injection by Miller. 


An evenly played game, Coach Randall Hendricks made some thoughtful third quarter adjustments that applied continuous pressure on Singapore's defense that lead to the USA win. Solid work by Rino Bowman (Ventura, Calif.) and Goraya in the back line and Sau Thong Lee (Saint Johns, Fla.) and Marion Mueller (Barrington, R.I.) in the midfield allowed the team to have a significant possession advantage. 


USA out earned Singapore 5-1 in penalty corners. 

O-55 Men 5 - 5 Malaysia 

The weather at the start of the game at the Western Province Cricket Club was perfect at a sunny 64°F with the beautiful Table Mountain range to the east. The team consists of multiple experienced athletes that have represented the USA in previous Masters World Cups. After the cancellation of the World Cup due to COVID-19 in 2021 and after much preparation, that included Zoom meetings and multiple training sessions, the team was eagerly awaiting the start of the game. 
The high scoring game began with an early field goal by Malaysia in the 4-minute mark. But that didn't deter the U.S. O-55 Men's Masters Team from regrouping and igniting the fire, in turn, scoring the next four goals, from two penalty corners and two field goals, before the end of the half.The goal scorers were Roberto Sabella (Key Biscayne, Fla.), Vijay Singh (Tracy, Calif.), Bob Khosla (Phoenix, Ariz.) and Greg Pereira (Fulton, Md.). Less than a minute before the first half, a brilliant save was made by fullback Peter Jones (Stamford, Conn.) on the goal line during a penalty corner ending the half with much excitement and 4-1 to USA.
Three minutes into the second half, Malaysia went on a scoring spell, tallying three in a 9-minute span to bring it even at 4-4. Malaysia added another in the 53rd minute to take the lead but in the 62nd minute, Jeremy Roberts (Beltsville, Md.) scored on a field goal to lock it at 5-5.
Goalkeepers Aji Prashant (San Jose, Calif.) and Pradeep Menon (Cumming, Ga.) shared a half and both played superbly making multiple difficult saves. 
The O-55 Men will regroup and prepare for the next game against England on Monday, October 3 at 9:30 a.m. ET on the campus of the University of Cape Town.

O-55 Men Spirit of Masters 3 - 0 Ireland 

In their first game of the WMH World Cup, the U.S. O-55 Men's Spirit of Masters Team blanked Ireland. Scoreless after the first quarter, USA got on the board 6-minutes into the second frame when Malik Akhtar (Owings Mills, Md.) scored off a penalty corner. Three minutes following the break, Akhtar tallied his second of the game after successfully converting a penalty stroke.


Michael Merkx (Moorestown, N.Y.) added his name to the scoresheet in the 68th minute off a field goal, to give USA the 3-0 win.

O-60 Women 0 - 3 Netherlands 

The U.S. O-60 Women's Masters Team went up against a good opponent in The Netherlands in their tournament opener.


The Oranje caught USA on the back foot and scored their three goals in the first two quarters. USA regrouped during halftime and came back strong to hold the score at 3-0. Second half saw USA playing a much better game but unfortunately couldn’t equalize the score.


O-65 Women 1 - 0 Scotland 

In a tight battle, the U.S. O-65 Women's Masters Team took on Scotland. Scoreless until the 26th minute, when captain Linda Kreiser (Middletown, Pa.) stepped up and scored off a penalty stroke to give USA the lead. The red, white and blue held on for the remainder of the game to tally a 1-0 win over Scotland.

Sun., Oct. 2 2:30 AM O-50W vs Chile  

5:45 AM O-55W vs Ireland Livestream
  7:45 AM O-55M SoM vs England Livestream
  11:15 AM O-50M vs Malaysia Livestream
Mon., Oct. 3 4:15 AM O-45M vs Zimbabwe Livestream
  6:00 AM O-55W vs Argentina Livestream
  7:30 AM O-50M vs Wales  
  9:30 AM O-55M vs England  
Tues., Oct. 4 2:15 AM O-55W vs Scotland Livestream
  4:15 AM O-55M vs South Africa Livestream
  5:45 AM O-45M vs England Livestream
  5:45 AM O-65W vs England  
  7:45 AM O-60W vs England Livestream
  9:30 AM O-50W vs Scotland Livestream
Wed., Oct. 5 2:15 AM O-55M vs All Livestream
  4:00 AM O-55M vs Wales  
  7:45 AM O-45M vs South Africa  
  11:00 AM O-60W vs LX SoM  
 Thurs., Oct. 6 4:00 AM O-50W vs Germany Livestream
  4:15 AM O-50M vs Germany  
  4:15 AM O-65W vs All SoM  
  6:00 AM O-55M vs Argentina  
  9:15 AM O-55W vs Chile Livestream
  9:30 AM O-60W vs South Africa  
Fri., Oct. 7 7:45 AM O-50M vs South Africa SoM Livestream
  9:15 AM O-45M vs Malaysia Livestream
  11:15 AM O-55W vs South Africa Livestream
Sat., Oct. 8 2:00 AM O-65W vs England LX Livestream
All times in Eastern Time Zone