Ireland’s men drew 2-2 against England in their final pool match of the European Hockey Championships taking place in Boom, Belgium, but missed out on a semi-final place.
Ireland now have to fight for fifth place – one position above their ranking in this tournament – after losing the opportunity to progress to the semis as goal difference came into play.
Ireland coach Andrew Meredith said: “It is obviously a tremendously disappointing result. We were surprised that the English played so negatively, sitting so deep behind their own half line.
“But despite going 2-0 down in the first half we were controlling long periods and were ahead in all departments statistically.
“The elements that probably contributed to not getting the win involved both key areas in front of the goal.”
Ireland, ranked 15th in the world, were first out of the traps, threatening the English defence early on and securing a penalty corner on the four minute mark.
However, Conor Harte’s drag was well defended, keeping the sides level. Three minutes later it was England on the attack with Condon spinning into the circle to get a shot away, which took a sneaky deflection en-route thanks to Carson’s stick to take the 1-0 lead.
The frantic affair continued in end to end fashion but Carson proved the hit man once again when left alone in the circle, slapping home a mid-high bouncing cross in the 19th minute.
Ireland were rewarded with a penalty corner opportunity in the 50th minute and Shane O’Donoghue stepped up and coolly converted.
Seven minutes later O’Donoghue found himself stepping up to the penalty stroke spot once again, netting a brace to level the scores.
Despite their best efforts, Ireland were unable to find the goal they need, with England happy to settle for a draw, which secured their place in the semi-finals.