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Dwyer earns draw for Australia

August 17, 2004 15:50 IST
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South Korea 3 - Great Britain 2
Australia 2 - Argentina 2

South Korea's men plucked a 3-2 win from the final minutes of their Group A hockey match against Britain on Tuesday, jumping back into contention for an Olympic medal at the Athens Games.

In another match in Group B, Jamie Dwyer drew level four minutes from the end as Australia forced Argentina to a 2-2 draw.

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Britain put up a better fight than many had expected against the fourth-ranked team and twice drew level.

But after Lee Jung-seon put the Koreans ahead from a corner three minutes from time, Britain failed to convert two penalty-corners -- won so late that both were taken after the siren.

"That really boosted our morale. We needed that," said Korean captain Kim Yong-bae.

South Korea, silver medallists at the 2000 Olympics, are among the top contenders in Athens and were disappointed with a 1-1 draw with Spain in their first pool match.

Against Britain, they pitched a midfield battle but created more chances in the first half and used their speed to contain counter-attacks in the second.

Lee opened the scoring by nicking his stick free of two defenders and shooting at full-stretch. Yeo Woon-kon scored the second.

For Great Breitain, Danny Hall leveled to make it 1-1 while Tom Betram restored parity to make it 2-2.

Australia, looking for their first Olympic gold despite making the semi-finals for five Games in a row, faced an embarrassing defeat when Mario Almada's two goals put the Argentines ahead.

But Dwyer, the 25-year-old Queenslander, saved the Kookaburras the blushes with his second equaliser of the match.

Dwyer, who scored a hat-trick in the 4-1 win over trans-Tasman neighbours New Zealand on Sunday, now has five goals from two matches.

Australia, with four points in the bag, need to win at least two of their remaining matches against defending champions the Netherlands, India and South Africa to ensure a semi-final berth.

Argentina, the Pan Americans champions, recovered from their 1-2 defeat by South Africa on Sunday to give the fancied Australians a scare.

Almada put the South Americans ahead in the second minute, before Dwyer drew level in the 26th following Australia's fourth penalty-corner.

Five minutes later, Almada struck again with a brilliant reverse hit from a narrow angle as the Argentines crossed over 2-1 ahead.

Australia appeared to be paying the price for wasting six of their seven penalty-corners, before Dwyer swooped into a goalmouth scramble and cooly pushed home in the dying minutes.

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