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Dutch to play Argentina in field hockey World Cup final

Dutch to play Argentina in field hockey World Cup final

Host Argentina and Netherlands advanced to Saturday’s women’s field hockey World Cup with narrow semi-final triumphs on Thursday.
The Dutch defeated England 4-3 on penalty strokes after extra time failed to break a 1-1 deadlock while Argentina defeated Germany 2-1.
Germany lost key defender Julia Mueller to a hip injury the second minute of the match, allowing Argentina to take advantage of German defensive struggles.
Argentina ace Luciana Aymar punished a Germany defensive lapse at the top of the circle, created space for herself and drove inside the left post for Argentina’s first goal in the opening half.
Soledad Garcia created Argentina’s second goal late in the second half, skirting the left backline to shoot into the pads of Germany goalkeeper Kristina Reynolds and Rosario Luchetti batted in the rebound.
Argentina earned 5 penalty corners but converted none, although that did not worry Argentina coach Carlos Retegui.
“You must be calm to score a high percentage of penalty corner goals and to keep a clear head and that is why we are saving them for the finals,” Retegui said.
Germany coach Michael Behrmann saw the loss of Mueller as the key to the game.
“It was a very big problem for us that we lost Julia Mueller in the first minutes to a hip injury,” Behrmann said. “It took us about 20 minutes to regroup.”
In the earlier semi-final, Kim Lammers slotted the last stroke just inside the left post to put Netherlands into the final.
Crista Cullen set up England’s goal mid-way through the second half, driving a free hit on the right into the circle for Hannah MacLeod to tip in a deflection goal.
Maartje Paumen converted Netherlands fifth penalty corner chance inside the right post five minutes later.
In the penalty shoot-out, Helen Richardson and Cullen and Chloe Rogers scored for England while skipper Kate Walsh and Charlotte Craddock missed.
Paumen, skipper Janneke Schopman and Maartje Goderie scored for Netherlands and Lidewij Welten missed, setting up Lammers to score with the last deciding stroke.
England coach Danny Kerry acknowledged Netherlands superiority.
“While it is difficult for me to say, I think Netherlands deserve their place in the final,” Kerry said.


Updated : 2020-12-01 05:19 GMT+08:00