Ireland men’s Hockey World Cup adventure in India was cut short yesterday by a familiar foe.
Defeat to England by 4-2 left Ireland out of the tournament following a loss to defending champions Australia in the opening match plus midweek draw with China.
Alexander Cox’s squad entered the match in search of a draw to enter the quarter-final play-offs.
Chris Cargo and Shane O’Donoghue grabbed Ireland goals but Mark Gleghorne was the final England scorer to knock out a side featuring his brother Paul.
“This is painful, you never get used to losing,” said Cox, following Ireland’s first World Cup appearance since 1990. “I wasn’t happy with the first quarter, we were on the back foot but in the second half we turned it around and gave it our all.
“I think in every game this tournament we had an opportunity to get a result but, in the end, we weren’t clinical enough.
“We tried; I’m proud of the players and how they conducted themselves, we gave it our all throughout the tournament.
“We just have to make sure the next time we are on the other end of the result.”
One boost for Irish hockey arrived with Larne’s Ayeisha McFerran named on the All-American Team of the Year for a fourth successive year. The University of Louisville student finished Ireland women’s World Cup silver medal success in the summer as ‘Goalkeeper of the Tournament’.