Belfius EuroHockey Championships
Women’s Pool C: Russia 5 (B Sadovaia 2, K Koroleva, K Shimilina) Belarus 0

Russia landed a big blow over their eastern European rivals Belarus to give themselves a fighting chance of staying in the top tier on Sunday morning.

Their penalty corner machine provided most of the joy as Bogdana Sadovaia nailed two drag-flicks in the first half and Kseniia Koroleva added another for 3-0. Kristina Shimilina and Iuliia Cheplygina completed the rout.

In a hotly contested first quarter ended scoreless, Alina Khalimova went closest to breaking the deadlock for Russia while Belarus had their moments in the second quarter via a couple of penalty corners.

Russia, though, were always looking for more likely to score with Khalimova’s shot shepherded wide by Tatsiana Liavonava. From the next attack, Sadovaia opened the scoring with a wicked drag-flick down the glove side of the goal.

Another one followed four minutes later, a lower effort down the same side for 2-0 at half-time.

For Belarus, they had a chance at a lifeline disallowed early in the second half when the ball bounced in off Ulyana Kasabutskaya’s arm from close range.

And it proved vital as Russia put the game to bed from a corner move in the 39th minute, Shimilina finishing off the move after Sadovaia thrust through the middle of the circle.

A lovely one-two down the right channel ended with Cheplygina finishing off and Russia had their first win of the competition.

Umpires:
A Keogh (IRL), C Wright (WAL)

Russia – Belarus
24’ Bogdana Sadovaia (PC) 1-0
28’ Bogdana Sadovaia (PC) 2-0
39’ Kseniia Koroleva (PC) 3-0
50’ Kristina Shimilina (FG) 4-0
52’ Iuliia Cheplygina (FG) 5-0