What a start for Britain's men's hockey team.

Just as Steve Harmison's wayward first ball of the 2006 Ashes set the tone for the whole of the series, they'll be hoping James Tindall's crashing strike is an omen for their Beijing campaign.

It certainly set tongues wagging at the Olympic hockey venue.

The New Zealand TV commentator next to me was cooing with admiration, so too my German counterpart just below me.

All four goals were of the highest quality - Rob Moore's reverse stick effort my personal favourite.

Below my position in the stands, Sean Kerly beamed a smile. He talked afterwards of aggression, creativity and a positive approach.

This was Kerly's kind of hockey.

I spoke to Matt Daly shortly after the final whistle, a hastily snatched two minutes before the warm-down routine.

He was clearly delighted with their start, happy to have corrected GB's abysmal Olympic record against Pakistan, and yet mindful of what might happen yet.

The Netherlands loom on Wednesday... Teun De Nooijer Taeke Taekema et al.

The task is a tough one, no question, but what are the Olympics about, if not dreaming the dream?

GB's women were visibly relieved when I spoke to them after their 2-2 draw with Argentina.

Like many in the stands, they knew that something special was needed after a first half in which they were well below their best.

The coach Danny Kerry told me he'd had a few blunt words for them in the half-time talk.

Something along the lines of - "This is the Olympic Games, and they're just about over for you unless you pull something out of the bag".

The wake-up call worked a treat.

It was entirely just that Sarah Thomas grabbed the first goal - she had a blinder in the second half.


And what a moment for Mel Clewlow, who retired after they failed to reach Athens four years ago, but was talked into a return by her Dad amongst others.

She knew she'd made the right decision when her shot sizzled its way into the Argentine net.

So is it enough to set them on their way? At least they feel like their Olympic campaign has begun.

Clewlow spoke eloquently after the game about the squad feeling stung by the hefty defeat to Germany.

They've had it tough, the GB women... Olympic champions first up, and then the world's second-ranked team.

NZ are next, and they must surely look on that with confidence. Let's hear your thoughts on their performances and prospects.....

Alastair Eykyn is a BBC reporter and commentator focusing on hockey. Our FAQs should answer any questions you have.


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