11.10.2015; Royal Leopold, Club Egara, Amsterdam and Harvestehuder THC all claimed their tickets to the Euro Hockey League KO16 which takes place next Easter following day three in Hamburg.

Match 9 Royal Leopold  3 v Dinamo Elektrostal 0

Leo fight off Dinamo for KO16 ticket

Royal Leopold confirmed their place in the KO16 with a 3-0 win over Dinamo Elektrostal, winning Round 1 Pool C though they had it far from their own way.

In the end, goals from Dimitri Cuvelier, Agustin Mazzilli and Gabriel Dabanch proved the difference from a game they only needed a draw to advance. Elektrostal made a series of big chances in the closing 20 minutes but Leo’s corner defence held firm to see out the result.

Cuvelier broke the deadlock in the 11th minute with an excellent driving run from midfield that opened the door for a powerful shot from the top of the circle.

Roman Rogov made some big saves to keep it that way until half-time and Mazzilli extended the advantage early in the second half with another powerful shot, beating Rogov’s left hand.

Needing victory, Elektrostal piled forward and created a number of good chances with Dimitry Azarov seeing a series of drag-flicks saved off the line by John Verdussen and Nicolas Poncelet while Julien Plennevaux was serving a ten-minute suspension.

Dinamo had a goal disallowed on video review soon after but their hopes were dashed when Gabriel Dabanch sniffed a chance and flicked over the goalkeeper to make it 3-0.

 

Match 10 Club Egara v Monkstown HC

Egara shut down Monkstown challenge

Club Egara just about saw off Irish champions Monkstown as a 3-3 draw saw the Spanish side claim top spot in Pool D, advancing to next Easter’s KO16.

Before the game, the equation was simple, Egara needed a draw while Monkstown required a victory to top Pool D and it proved a huge tussle for three quarters.

David Fitzgerald proved the key man for Monkstown in the first half making a quartet of key interventions, the pick of which saw him get an out-stretched toe to Eduardo Arbos’s snap shot on the turn.

He also kept out a corner and its rebound to keep the scoreboard blank. While he was the key man, Monkstown did have plenty of good moments on the counter and they grew into the match in the second half with the skills of Lee Cole and Gareth Watkins opening up a number of chances. They were unable to convert from a corner, though, and Egara were the ones who eventually took the initiative in a tension-filled phase of the game.

It came from a swift right wing attack from Josep Farres which Fitzgerald got a touch to but Lluis Mercade was in the perfect place to gobble up the chance and roll in to the goal. He celebrated in style.

It left Town needing two goals but it was Egara who were in the ascendancy and won two more corners that Fitzgerald kept out. But they could not hold out beyond and they fell 2-0 down in the 52nd minute when Edi Tubau hammered the backboard.

Within a minute, he was tapping home the third goal from a quick counter and that was the game done and dusted. Kyle Good got one back from close range with four minutes to go and Gareth Watkins powered another to the roof of the net with 90 seconds left.

And then Caruth bashed home a corner rebound for 3-3 with 12 seconds remaining but it was too late to deny Egara the ticket to the KO16.

Match 11 AH&BC Amsterdam v Saint Germain HC

 Four-star Amsterdam cruise through

Amsterdam cruised into the KO16 with confident display against Saint Germain, winning 4-0 to top Round 1 Pool A with something to spare. Saint Germain’s defence meant that it was never likely to be a similar scoreline to Saturday’s 19-2 rout over Pomorzanin Torun but they existed only on scraps of attack as the Dutch giants always had the key cards in the deck.

It took just two and a half minutes to get the scoreboard ticking from a quite brilliant counter-attack, Sander ’t Hart diving onto a first time pass from the left wing. Saint Germain, though, did well to parry a wave of attacks with Billy Bakker, Kenny Bain and Robert Tigges all denied from major chances.

Valentin Verga, though, extinguished hopes of a Saint Germain surprise when he finished off a backhand chance from the left of the circle and then converted a penalty stroke for 3-0. ’t Hart grabbed the fourth goal with five minutes to go to close out the win.

Match 12 Harvestehuder THC v HC Wien

Harvestehuder THC complete KO16 line-up

 Harvestehuder THC sent the sizeable host support home happy as they completed the line-up for the KO16 as they beat HC Wien 6-1, a result that saw them top Pool B. Michael Korper’s four goals played a key role, aided by efforts from Tobias Hauke and Leon Willemsen. Wien’s defence stood firm for the first 23 minutes in the face of an onslaught with Michal Zdrojewski making some great saves between the posts.

Harvestehuder THC eventually made their pressure count in the 23rd minute with two goals in quick succession. Michael Korper got the first with a drag-flick before Tobias Hauke spun on a shot at the top of the circle and picked out the bottom corner. And it stayed that way until half-time, mainly because of Thomas Klingenbrunner’s amazing diving touch off the line to keep out a third HTHC goal. Leon Willemsen added a third goal for the hosts as he nipped in behind the cover defence and swept in first time for 3-0.

But any thought that HC Wien would capitulate were put into sharp relief when Simon Landsteiner stole in at the near post to apply a neat touch to guide in a cross from the right from Lukasz Staniczek. Korper’s second corner restored the three goal advantage, however, with 13 minutes to go. He completed his hat trick with six minutes, a sharp volley after Zdrojewski made a fine initial save and closed out the win in the final minute.

It means the 16 teams are confirmed for the EHL KO16 which takes place next Easter. The quartet join the Netherlands’ Oranje Zwart and SV Kampong, Germany’s Rot-Weiss Koln and UHC Hamburg, Spain’s RC de Polo and Atletic Terrassa, England’s Wimbledon, Poland’s WKS Grunwald Poznan, France’s Racing Club and Russia’s Dinamo Kazan.

Image Credit: Main Photograph: Michael Körper (HTHC) – Euro Hockey League/Frank Uijlenbroek. These images may not be reproduced without the explicit permission of the EHL or the photographer.