sport

China damage England's chances

England women's World Cup hopes suffered a significant blow with a 3-0 defeat to China in Holland.

Many of the players were in tears at the final whistle as a second successive loss left them up against it to make the semi-finals already.

Despite dominating, enjoying nearly two-thirds possession in their opponents' half and more than twice the number of circle penetrations, England paid the price for a lack of sharpness in front of goal.

The closest they came was when Lily Owsley's narrow-angle shot hit both posts in the first half and a failure to convert seven penalty corners contributed to their shortcomings as, after a goalless first half, China twice scored against the run of play through Yang Peng and Melyu Lang.

Having lost their opener to the United States, coach Jason Lee threw caution to the wind and pulled goalkeeper Maddie Hinch for the final six minutes to add an extra outfield player but a loss of possession in side their own half allowed Peng to score her second with an angled reverse-stick shot.

England effectively have to win their remaining three matches - two of which are against title holders Argentina and European champions Germany - if they are to stand a chance of finishing in the top two in Group B and progressing to the semis.