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Australia Women’s Field Hockey Team Wins Another Gold

August 2, 1996

ATLANTA (AP) _ The pressure was on the Australian women’s field hockey team. That’s what expectations, and success, can do.

Nevertheless, the Aussies came through.

Alyson Annan scored two goals Thursday night as Australia beat South Korea 3-1 in the Olympic gold medal match to extend its unbeaten streak in tournament competition to 40 games dating back to last year.

It was a repeat of the gold medal match in Seoul eight years ago, when Australia also won the gold, beating the South Koreans 2-0.

``In Seoul, we didn’t really have a lot of pressure,″ said Australian forward Jackie Pereira, a member of both gold medal-winning teams who announced her retirement after the competition. ``Gold or silver would have been OK.

``Today, we really wanted gold because we thought we deserved it. We wouldn’t have been satisfied with anything else.″

Australia finished fifth in the 1992 games in Barcelona. A lot has changed since that time.

When asked if winning the gold felt as good as she anticipated, Amman smiled and replied, ``Better.″

Earlier in the day, the Netherlands won the bronze medal by beating Britain 4-3 in a shootout after the teams played to a scoreless tie.

Annan scored her second goal with 26:29 remaining, converting a penalty kick to break a 1-1 tie. She fired the ball to the left of diving goalie You Jae-sook and into the South Korean net.

A goal by Australia’s Katrina Powell with 7 1/2 minutes left served as insurance.

``I was given the opportunity (to score) and took advantage of it,″ Amman said. ``We had a lot of opportunities to score and didn’t. To our credit, we persisted.″

The Aussies took a 1-0 lead in the 17th minute when Annan scored off the game’s first penalty corner. The South Koreans tied it in the 30th minute on a goal by Cho Eun-jung after the second penalty corner of the match.

Australia was 6-0-1 in Olympic round-robin competition, with the only blemish a 3-3 tie with South Korea, who was 4-1-2. The Australians outscored their opponents 24-4 in their seven round-robin matches.

Goalie Jacqueline Toxopeus of the Netherlands dove to her right to block a shot by Britain’s Kathryn Johnson from the penalty spot on the final shootout attempt of the bronze medal match.

Suzan van der Wielen scored the winning goal on the final shot by the Netherlands. Earlier, Myntje Donners, Carole Thate and Jeannette Lewin converted for the winners and Christine Cook, Sue Fraser and Pauline Robertson scored for Britain, which won the bronze medal in the 1992 games.

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