Photo Credits : Getty Images

Great Britain’s women were beaten by New Zealand in their first FIH Pro League game after an emphatic display by the Black Sticks.

Britain had 60% possession but found it difficult to get a foothold in the game, while Olivia Merry scored a hat-trick for the Commonwealth Games champions in a ruthless performance.

There was a debut for Great Britain’s Lizzie Neal, while Giselle Ansley got Britain’s goal with a penalty stroke in the first quarter.

The side will now look to regroup for their next match away to Australia on Saturday 17 February.

Match report : 

New Zealand got off to a very positive start with Olivia Merry nipping in front of a defender to turn home past Nikki Cochrane from close range. But Giselle Ansley made it 1-1 before the end of the first quarter, firing home a penalty stroke on 11 minutes.

The concession of a penalty corner on 19 minutes proved crucial, Ella Gunson beating Amy Tennant to make it 2-1 at the interval.

A thunderous second from Merry made it 3-1 on 35, and from that point on New Zealand were able to control proceedings.

Merry found the net again on 51 from a corner, before Amy Robinson produced a lovely deft touch to make it 5-1 with a minute to go.

With a debut for Neal and a number of other young players part of the squad, there are some reasons to be upbeat after this very first game, but the athletes will of course be looking for a more positive result against Australia next time out.

The FIH Pro League has produced top class hockey in every game so far, and Britain will be looking to turn in a positive performance in their next match in Perth.