Ireland trounce Kazakhstan 12-0 in World League 2 opener

Anna O'Flanagan was on target four times for Ireland against Kazakhstan
Anna O'Flanagan was on target four times for Ireland against Kazakhstan

Ireland's women got their World League 2 Pool B campaign off to a winning start by thumping Kazakhstan 12-0 in Kuala Lumpur on Saturday.

Anna O'Flanagan scored four of Ireland's goals, with Nikki Evans securing a hat-trick.

Katie Mullan, Chloe Watkins, Rebecca Barry, Gilian Pinder and Nicci Daly also got their names on the scoresheet at the Stadium Hoki Tun Razak.

Ireland's next game is against hosts Malaysia on Monday at 12:30 GMT.

They complete their group series by facing Hong Kong on Tuesday (10:15 GMT).

The tournament is Ireland's first round of qualification for the 2018 World Cup and they will be targeting a top two finish in order to qualify for World League 3, where they could play in either Belgium (21 June-2 July) or South Africa (8-23 July) depending on rankings.

Ireland are the second highest ranked team in the tournament as they sit 16th, with only Italy, 15th, ranked above them.

Malaysia are ranked 21st, Kazakhstan 33rd and Hong Kong 37th.

Pool A has Italy joined by Thailand, Wales and Singapore with rankings of 15, 31, 32 and 43 respectively.