2nd July 2018: Yesterday was the final day of the Champions Trophy and with no European teams in the Final it was left to the hosts, Netherlands to aim for a medal.
The Dutch team (WR:4) claimed the bronze medal thanks to a 2-0 victory over Rio 2016 Olympic gold medalists Argentina (WR:2). The match was evenly contested throughout, with both teams outstanding in defence to keep each other off the score-board until the fourth quarter. The deadlock was finally broken when a perfectly executed penalty corner drag-flick from Jeroen Hertzberger ratted the backboard in the 47th minute. The scoring was completed by Mirco Pruijser, who produced an outstanding finish to flick into the roof of the Argentina net following a blocked penalty corner effort. It proved to be an excellent ending to the campaign of the host nation, and was certainly enjoyed by the thousands of fans watching in the stadium.
“It was an amazing game and the crowd were also amazing”, said Netherlands star Glenn Schuurman, who became a Champions Trophy bronze medal winner on the occasion of his 100th senior international match. “Argentina are a really good team. They are the Olympic champions, they won against Australia yesterday and it was really close today.”
It took a shoot out for Belgium to avoid last place at what was an incredibly close Champions Trophy.
The 5-6 game between Belgium (WR:3) and Pakistan (WR:13) was won by the Red Lions, who overcame their stubborn opponents in a shoot-out. Pakistan opened the scoring through Ali Shan before goals either side of half time from Tom Boon and Florent van Aubel gave the Rio 2016 Olympic silver medallists a 2-1 advantage. It was a lead that they held until the dying seconds, with Pakistan’s Toosiq Arshad firing between the legs of goalkeeper Loic van Doren to level the scores at 2-2 and take the match into a shoot-out.
However, Van Doren – younger brother of reigning FIH Hockey Stars Player of the Year Arthur van Doren – made a string of crucial blocks to give Belgium a 2-1 shoot-out success.
All official competition information can be found on FIH.CH, with extended coverage available the FIH social media channels.
Results – Sunday 1st July 2018
5/6: Belgium 2, Pakistan 2 (2-1 after shoot-out)
3/4: Netherlands 2, Argentina 0
1/2: Australia 1, India 1 (3-1 after shoot-out)
1: Australia – Gold
2: India – Silver
3: Netherlands – Bronze
Best goal, presented by Auping: Mirco Pruijser (NED) – Fifth goal of the match vs Belgium
Best Coach, presented by Deloitte: Colin Batch (AUS)
Best Rising Player, presented by Volvo: Jake Harvie (AUS)
Best Goalkeeper, Presented by ONVZ: PR Sreejesh (IND)
Hero Top scorer: Gonzalo Peillat (ARG) – 6 goals
Best Player, presented by Rabobank: Aran Zelewski (AUS)
Photograph: Bronze medalists, The Netherlands (Frank Uijlenbroek (c))