Ipoh: India's chief coach Michael Nobbs was left fuming at his wards' lacklustre performance against New Zealand in their opening match of the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup hockey tournament on Thursday, saying the game was a "reality check" for the erstwhile giants of the game.
The Australian said his wards were just not good enough to tackle the Black Sticks in the second half of the match. "I am more angry than disappointed. Our game's pattern just fell apart in the second half," Nobbs said after India slumped to a 5-1 defeat at the hands of New Zealand.
"We made silly errors and built pressure upon ourselves. New Zealand are ranked seventh in the world, and that's because they are a very good side," Nobbs added as he tried to put the game in perspective, asserting that India should have produced a better display.
New Zealand scored three goals in the space of eight minutes late in the second half as India wilted under pressure asserted by the Black Sticks, who will feature in the same group as India in the London Olympic Games.
New Zealand had a 2-1 lead in the first half through goals from Simon Child (1st minute) and Andy Hayward (34th minute), while India's only goal came from Shivendra Singh (6th minute). But New Zealand scored three quick goals in the second half through Nick Wilson (58th), Stephen Jenness (61st) and Matt L'huillier (65th) to stun the fragile Indian defence.
Nobbs said New Zealand are a very experienced side and had results to show for their world ranking in recent years.