So, the awesome thing about having all the vids up on youtube is, months later some of us who missed games when they were happening can get to catch up!
As our game against Canada wound down, in the next court the NZ women kicked off against France. I tried to catch a few of the womens games over the comp, but didn't see a lot... what with trying to see all our opposition play, sleeping, skyping and watching endless superhero movies on american Netflix, watching Ben eat red onions, helping Nick eat other peoples lunches... it's a busy time back home at the accommodation.
So, how mint is this that we can have a look now. Here's the link, NZ vs FRA.
What an epic start to this game. Watch the french striker. Not including the time she takes to get to the strike, she is down for 25 seconds on this first play of the game, and most of the players around her on both teams have a similar first involvement. Awesome!
It's long for a gif but at 5:50 in the clip, Leah drops on a french back and gets in behind the french backs. It's apparent here how getting players behind the puck like COL does can be really helpful, as the play is slowed but not stopped by the french cover defender, and a forward comes back to backtackle but it never comes back, it is pushed forward and the kiwis essentially have a vertical overlap and the forwards finish it with a good doubleteam.
A couple times in the first few minutes the french team gets a sniff of space and goes straight to the middle trying to hit a forward swimming an angle, looking like they are determined to use the middle as much as they can...
Notice she has oodles of space in front in the channel to just get going forwards but she's not interested whatsoever.
Not long after the kiwis pull a legit aussie switch, complete with back swimming backwards, and hit a forward on the other side ending up on the bin, great move.
There was no-one out there except the ref for a while there so it appears to have caught france offguard a bit.
NZ then had an advantage and france a sinbin, and from the corner the kiwis pushed towards the goal and just got the puck in before the defence could sweep to the other corner. This is known as a "backdoor" goal in Nz, to add some trivia.
Halftime already! This is a great game, lots of bottom time and intensity from both teams. I really really hope the next worlds they have a camera on each side though... you have to! It's so frustrating only really being able to see what's happening on the near side of the pool, and anything past halfway is a blurry haze, despite Quebec having amazing clarity. Don't worry about mirror imaging everyone to lefties.... I reckon just put a white and black arrow on the overlays so we can check it if we get confused and then just switch the cameras.
ok rant over.
Lots of the french girls are wearing elbow pads, makes it hard to tell them apart a bit but their 12 is having a great game from the back. They seem to be playing a 3-2-1, which basically means
Essentially, are you trying to keep your fullback behind everyone as last defender, or are you pivoting the backs around so the outside defender is the back on that side. The aussies push the fullback up into the middle and pivot. Some french teams push both halfbacks together and protect the goalie, some do it similar to the aussies. It won't stop the fullback from pushing up into the play and coming onto the wall, just a default or starting position from general play sometimes really.
There is very excessive use of the phrase "coming in hot" from the incredibly biased nz commentator who is i'm pretty sure one of the kiwi girls who is sitting out, who can blame her watching her team-mates right? Not a lot more on camera in that game, ending 3-0. Great start for the kiwi girls but france were looking pretty good too and had a bunch of chances.