The Black Sticks Women have started their series against China with a 2-1 victory in Beijing.
All square at 1-1 at halftime, striker Katie Glynn deflected in the winning goal with less than three minutes on the clock.
Black Sticks coach Mark Hager said it was a gutsy victory against the Chinese, who are ranked one place higher than the sixth ranked Kiwis.
“It was a hard fought game but we were inconsistent and pretty patchy. We need a complete 70 minute effort in the next match,” said Hager.
The home side opened the scoring in the 10th minute from a penalty corner before the Kiwis responded a minute later.
Speedster Anita Punt broke through the midfield and in a superb solo effort smashed a reverse shot into the goal.
Glynn’s goal came from a great shot from captain Kayla Sharland which Glynn deflected in to give the Kiwis the late victory.
The Black Sticks face China again tonight (NZ time) in the second test of the three test series.
RESULT Full Time: 2-1 (New Zealand win) Half Time: 1-1 New Zealand Goal Scorers: Anita Punt, Katie Glynn.