Pakistan and England fight out thrilling draw

Sohail Abbas was in form against England as he opened the scoring with his 328th goal for his country. PHOTO: FILE

AMSTERDAM: In a fast and furious last six minutes, Pakistan lost the lead, regained and finally settled for a 2-2 draw with England at the men’s 4-Nations tournament here Wednesday.

The day’s other match – which like the England Pakistan clash had been held over from Tuesday because of a thunderstorm – saw hosts Netherlands beat arch-rivals Germany 2-1.

Pakistani legend Sohail Abbas was in form against England as he opened the scoring with his 328th goal for his country, slotting home Pakistan’s only penalty corner.

Khawaja Junaid, Pakistan manager, believes Abbas is approaching complete fitness.

“His fitness is much better than at the World Cup last December and we are focusing on getting him into perfect condition for the London Olympics,” Junaid said.

Abbas was suspended late in the match, followed immediately by Richard Smith equalizing for England.

Shakeel Abbasi scored a short-handed goal for Pakistan, two minutes from time while Abbas was still under suspension.

Barry Middleton deflected in a pass from outside the circle for England’s equalizer, seconds later.

Jason Lee, England coach, was unhappy with the result.

“We should have won comfortably as we had chances to score more goals,” Lee said.

Netherlands beat Germany in a fast flowing game, both breaking through the middle of the pitch.

Thilo Stralkowski scored for Germany in the first half.

Taeke Taekema converted a penalty stroke and Quirijn Caspers scored for Netherlands in the second half.

Paul van As, Netherlands coach and Markus Weisse, Germany coach agreed the game was a good spectacle.

“It was a fast, interesting game with a lot of action in both attacking circles,” Weisse said.

The tournament has become a round-robin competition with no final after the cancellation of Tuesday’s matches.

On Friday, Pakistan takes on Germany and England play Netherlands.

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