SCOTLAND secured the bronze medal in the Investec London Cup with a 3-2 win over Wales in the Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre on Sunday.

The result means the young, inexperienced Welsh side lost every game in the tournament, despite a marked improvement through the week.

That confidence, boosted by their first two goals of the competition against South Africa on Saturday and this was evident as they gave a brave showing to a determined Scottish outfit.

Welsh goalkeeper Ria Male smothered a low penalty corner flick on seven minutes and two minutes after Scots captain Linda Clement shot on the turn, but wide.

On the 10-minute mark the Scots ramped up the intensity and the opening goal was soon to follow, the ball popping in front of Nikki Lloyd in the mouth of the goal for a simple knock-in.

They soon won a second penalty corner, but fired high, before minutes later the ball popped up to Vicki Bunce who slotted home on the half-hour.

With just under four minutes left in the first half the Scot won another penalty corner, but replicated the routine from their first, with the same result – Male saving low to her right.

The Scots began the second half equally strongly, Ailsa Wyllie’s shot saved by Male, but a third goal was not far behind, as Ali Bell fired home on 46 minutes.

Despite the three-goal deficit, the Welsh side knew this was a game they could compete in and Sophie Clayton gave the Scottish a hint of what they are capable of, unleashing a wicked shot on the reverse, but Amy Gibson in the Scottish net stood tall and parried it clear.

The breakthrough for Wales came on 55 minutes, as Phoebe Roberts, in space on the right, opened the face of the stick and slapped the ball into the top corner with considerable venom.

The Welsh defence smothered a further Scottish penalty corner and they began playing with belief they just might clinch a point.

Another penalty corner strike from the Scots was saved and cleared to the sideline and on the stroke of 70 minutes, the Welsh won a penalty corner.

Leah Wilkinson ripped the ball toward the right post where Emma Batten got low and deflected home to much jubilation. The hooter sounded shortly after.

Speaking after the match, Scotland’s Emily Maguire said: “It is always great to finish with a win.

“Wales have been building through the tournament and each game they have improved.

“I think, to be honest we are a little bit disappointed with today’s game.

“We will just come out as hard as we can next time we play them and we will be keeping a few things up our sleeves.”

Welsh goal-scorer Phoebe Richards said: “I think in a way it is a positive that we are frustrated that we lost, considering that they are at least 15 places higher than us in the world [rankings].

“There were questions about whether we should have been here or not, but we have shown that we can compete.

“I think the confidence yesterday of getting some goals has started it all up again.

“So it’s all positive going into the Commonwealth Games.”

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