COMMONWEALTH GAMES: Shipperley finds a silver lining in final heartache

Zoe Shipperley with her silver medal

Zoe Shipperley with her silver medal

First published in Sport

Oxfordshire's Zoe Shipperley was left with mixed emotions after she and her England women’s hockey teammates suffered the cruellest of defeats in the final at Glasgow 2014 on Saturday night, writes STUART WEIR.

Shipperley, who lives at Marsh Gibbon, near Bicester, was thrilled to have won a silver medal, but shattered by the circumstances in which it came about.

England led from the 48th minute through Lily Owsley’s goal, but Jodie Kenny equalised for Australia with just 15 seconds left following a penalty corner.

In the penalty shoot-out, goalkeeper Rachael Lynch pulled off three brilliant saves to hand the Hockeyroos the most thrilling of victories 3-1 on penalties.

Reflecting on the game yesterday morning, Shipperley, a former pupil and now teacher at St Edward’s School, Oxford, said: “We were absolutely devastated to have lost it in the last seconds and it is still a bit sore.

“But on reflection I am thrilled with silver and so proud of how far we have come as a team and have pulled together.

“Obviously you want gold and that is what we came for.”

Shipperley added: “We were so close, but sport is like that.

“That is the excitement of sport and what makes the game so brilliant.

“But a silver at the Commonwealth Games is great and I am thrilled with that.”

Former Oxford University student Dan Fox was as relieved as he was delighted after he and his England teammates won bronze in the men’s hockey.

Following a 4-1 defeat by Australia in the semi-final on Saturday, England pipped New Zealand 4-2 on penalties in the bronze medal match following a 3-3 draw.

Fox, who lives at Godalming in Surrey, said: “Obviously everyone comes here looking for a gold medal.

“We were disappointed to lose the semi-final, but picked ourselves up and were delighted with today’s win.

“New Zealand are a great side and it was a really tough battle. To come away with a bronze medal is really great and is something to build on for the future.”

Australia beat India 4-0 in the final to take gold.

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