altOCTOBER 4 - ENGLAND'S women's hockey team failed to qualify for the semi-finals of the World Cup after a 1-1 draw against hosts Spain in Madrid today.




A late goal from Mel Clewlow (pictured) gave them hope but they were unable to find the vital second goal they needed. England will now go into the play-offs for 5th to 8th place where they will first face Japan on Friday.


"This is probably one of the lowest points of my life," said coach Danny Kerry.


"I'm very upset and I can't describe the frustration the players, the coaching and management team feel," said Kerry. "People who are not involved in top-level sport will not understand how low we feel.


"We struggled to break Spain down - we don't have the skill sets yet to unlock teams who are unwilling to play hockey and that is pretty much why we have a lot of pressure but don't turn teams over yet.


"Picking up the players after this will really define everything about us."


England, who needed a win to advance, faced an uphill task after falling behind to a Monserrat Cruz goal after nine minutes.


After going a goal down early on, England, with captain Kate Walsh back in the line-up after missing two matches because of a knee injury, stepped up the pressure in the second half.


Clelow equalised six minutes from the end but they could not break the Spanish down for a second time and it was the hosts who advanced to the last four.