Harte on the mark as he joins 200 club
Ireland 2 Pakistan 2
Conor Harte celebrated winning his 200th international cap by scoring a goal as Ireland drew 2-2 with Asian giants Pakistan at Lisnagarvey last night.
Central defender Harte became the fifth player to join the 200 club after Ronan Gormley and Ulster trio Eugene Magee, John Jackson and Michael Watt, and he didn't have long to wait to get on the scoresheet - just 19 minutes.
Banbridge's Johnny McKee almost set up an early goal in the first of three games against Pakistan as both prepare for their final World Cup qualifiers but it was the visitors who opened their account first when Muhammed Aleem Bilal converted their first penalty corner, getting a deflection on a drag flick which wrong-footed David Harte.
But the goalkeeper's twin brother Conor levelled matters eight minutes later when he finished off a penalty corner after Shane O'Donoghue spun at the top of the circle.
Pakistan restored their lead when Ali Shan snapped up a rebound but were fortunate to stay ahead when Lee Cole collected a through ball from Jackson only to see his lob over the keeper strike the crossbar.
The Green Machine had the edge in the second half but were unable to put away chances, particularly from penalty corners.
But the equalising goal finally came four minutes from the end when Jeremy Duncan finished off a superb move involving Lisnagarvey's Matthew Nelson and Pembroke's Alan Sothern.
The Irish take on Pakistan again tomorrow and Sunday at Garvey, both at 2pm, in what are their final home games before July's World League 3 series over in Johannesburg.
Before that they are off to Germany later this month for the Hamburg Masters which features the hosts, Spain and Austria.
Ireland: David Harte (Kampong), John Jackson (Bath Buccs.), Jonny Bell (Lisnagarvey), Conor Harte (Racing Bruxelles), Stuart Loughrey (Hampstead & Westminster), Chris Cargo (Hampstead & Westminster); Shane O'Donoghue (Glenanne), Kirk Shimmins (Pembroke), Eugene Magee (Banbridge), Johnny McKee (Banbridge), Matthew Nelson (Lisnagarvey). Subs: Matthew Bell (Banbridge), Sean Murray (Lisnagarvey), Neal Glassey (Lisnagarvey), Jamie Carr (Three Rock), Lee Cole (Monkstown), Alan Sothern (Pembroke), Jeremy Duncan (UCD).