Hockeyroos level late, draw with NZ again | Ralph-Lauren

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The Hockeyroos and New Zealand have drawn 2-2 for the second time in three days, meaning their Trans-Tasman series will be decided in the fourth and final match.

Unlike the first two games, which finished 1-1 and 2-2, the world No.5 Hockeyroos started stronger in Palmerston North and were rewarded when Madison Fitzpatrick struck a well-timed drag flick in the seventh minute that found its way past Black Sticks goalkeeper Grace O’Hanlon.

At the other end, Hockeyroos keeper Ashlee Wells did well to prevent the Kiwis from drawing level with a fine save from a penalty corner two minutes out from quarter time.

Rosie Malone and Renee Taylor then forced consecutive saves from O’Hanlon but the hosts levelled in the 23rd minute when captain Stacey Michelson threaded a 50-metre hit pass that split the Hockeyroos’ defence and Julia King duly scored on the reverse.

Rachael Lynch, who replaced Wells at halftime, kept out Olivia Merry’s low drive but Ella Gunson was the first to the rebound and knocked the ball into the backboard on 41 minutes to make it 2-1.

The Hockeyroos upped the tempo in the last quarter but their cause wasn’t helped when Mariah Williams received a yellow card, leaving the Australians with one less for five minutes.

But the visitors again showed grit to equalise late on with captain for the day Brooke Peris opening up the field with a quality turn allowing Taylor to unload a powerful shot.

The final match of the series takes place on Tuesday.

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