IN THE Olympic women's hockey group of death, New Zealand has become Australia's grim reaper.
The Black Sticks' 1-0 win over Australia in their Pool B opener at London's Riverbank Arena on Sunday all but ended the Hockeyroos' hopes of a medal.
Qualifying top two in a group featuring world No.2 Argentina and No.3 Germany will be extremely difficult after Australia fell behind to a third minute Cathryn Finlayson goal from a penalty corner and couldn't catch up.
The Hockeyroos need to win every remaining match and hope other results go their way to make the semi-finals and win a medal.
Fittingly the Black Sticks - dressed in funereal black and wielding their sticks like scythes struck their early blow - and then left the Hockeyroos to bleed out slowly.
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