The Dutch hockey players are in the quarterfinals of the World Cup. They also won their third group match, although it was difficult against World Cup debutant Chile. Again field goals were scarce, but Eva de Goede’s goal was beautiful: 3-1. The hockey players will not be back in action for six days.
The Netherlands and Chile have only met once before. At the previous meeting during the Hockey World League in 2013, the Orange squad won the semi-finals 10-0. On paper, there were also the balance of power in the last group match at this World Cup, because Chile is in a world championship for the first time and fifteenth in the world ranking. So a hockey dwarf.
But the Chilean hockey players were already full of surprises this tournament. They scored for the first time in a World Cup against Ireland and won that game. It moved national coach Sergio Vigil to tears. With a good dose of passion, Chile has already shown, a lot is possible. ,,We knew that Chile would play with all its heart and they have done so again’, concluded Renée van Laarhoven.
Although the mentality also cost the team a lot of cards. It even resulted in a suspension for captain Camila Caram for “reckless physical contact between players during the match.” Seventeen players could only use national coach Vigil against the Netherlands. There was no sign of any fatigue, the Chilean hockey players kept fighting until the bitter end.
Once again the Wagener Stadium was sold out, but the fans were not really warmed by the game of Orange. A lot went wrong and great opportunities were missed. It was difficult to break through Chile’s defense, Van Laarhoven also noticed. ,,The tempo of the ball could really be faster, because that way everyone gets a little more space. Too often we looked for an even better ball and they literally sit with their knees on the ground to stop that ball.”
Throughout the tournament, Orange makes it difficult to finish the chances (five field goals out of eleven goals in total). So it had to come through the penalty corners. Just before the end of the first quarter, Lidewij Welten opened the score via a penalty corner rebound: 1-0. Instead of the Orange running further, Chile came back.
We also have free time, of course, which we will spend a lot of time together. And of course we’re also going to kick a ball.
There was a lot of fortune involved, because Francisca Tala got the ball into the stick via a Dutch stick. All she had to do was pick the clear spot for Chile’s second ever World Cup goal: 1-1. The national coach cheered as if the loot had already been received.
It wasn’t, because the Netherlands scored via Yibbi Jansen (penalty corner) and Eva de Goede, who placed the ball in the top corner in a wonderful way: 3-1. Duel played against the brave Chileans. The quarterfinals had been reached. ,,The goal was to win all group matches”, Van Laarhoven said to Chile afterwards.
No game for six days, because the hockey players will not play their quarterfinals until next Tuesday, July 12 (7:30 PM). What did Van Laarhoven think about that? “Interesting,” she said the following week. “I don’t really have any experience with it yet. We will continue to follow our program, will train hard to stay somewhat in the race rhythm.”
And further? A team building activity perhaps? ,,I have no idea yet. Of course we also have free time, which we will spend a lot of time together getting a coffee somewhere. And of course we will also kick a ball.”
The opponent in the quarterfinals will most likely be Belgium of national coach Raoul Ehren – number two Australia has one more game to play and the points are equal – or Chile, which finished third in the group.
It didn’t matter to Van Laarhoven which opponent it will be. “We have to focus on our game. If we do the things we need to do right and stick to the game plan, I honestly don’t care.
Free unlimited access to Showbytes? Which can!
Log in or create an account and never miss a thing from the stars.