The Belfius EuroHockey Championship men’s semi-final line-up took shape with hosts Belgium set to face Germany while the Netherlands will meet Spain in the final four on Thursday at Wilrijkse Plein, Antwerp.
For Spain, their passage to the next phase was the most tense, ending a 10-year wait to be back in the final four as they held England to a 2-2 draw with a strong defensive performance late in the game. Belgium were already confirmed in first place in Pool A and completed a perfect three wins from three when they beat Wales.
In Pool B, Germany copper-fastened their semi-final place with an impressive 5-0 win over Ireland. The Netherlands needed at least a point against Scotland to top the pool and they got it with something to spare – a 6-0 win over Scotland.
As Belgium finished first in their pool, it has led to a slight change in the original schedule for Thursday; the Netherlands will play Spain at 18.00 CET while Belgium face Germany at 20.30 CET.
Wednesday sees the final series of women’s group games with all four semi-final places up for grabs. A win for England against Belarus (10.00 CET) will see the former through to the semis; in the second Pool B game of the day, Germany need a draw or better against Ireland but an Irish win would see them into their first ever European semi-final.
Para Hockey will take centre stage for the afternoon before women’s Pool A comes to a conclusion in the evening. The Netherlands need to win by two goals or more against Russia (18.00) to go through to the semis. Whoever wins between Spain and Belgium (20.30) in the last game of pool play will go through to the semi-finals, too.
The 2nd day of the Cronos Euro ParaHockey Championships 2019 took place under the sun at the Royal Victory club. In each pool, every team played against their three opponents to determine tomorrow’s opponent for the finals matches taking place at the Belfius EuroHockey Championships main venue. You can read all about the day’s action here
Pool A: Spain 2 (P Quemada, D Arana) England 2 (S Ward, A Jackson)
Spain got a vital draw which puts them within touching distance of the semi-finals of the European Championships for the first time since 2009, dropping England into the relegation pool.
England started well, leading through Sam Ward’s first half goal but Pau Quemada and Diego Arana turned things around in the third quarter and while Ashley Jackson equalised, Spain clung on for the result they needed.
Belgium 6 (C Charlier 2, A Hendrickx, T Boon, N de Kerpel, T Briels) Wales 0
Belgium powered to a fine win over Wales at the Belfius EuroHockey Championships, topping Pool A and going into the semi-final to play Germany.
They scored twice in each of the first three quarters to underpin the result with Cedric Charlier netting two times. The win also extinguished Wales’ long-shot at a semi-final place – they go into Pool C with one point, hoping they can avoid relegation.
Ireland 0 Germany 5 (N Wellen, T Grambusch, M Hellwig, F Fuchs, L Windfeder)
Germany copper-fastened a guaranteed semi-final place as they saw off Ireland as two early goals meant they were always in control of this Pool B tie.
Niklas Wellen and Tom Grambusch put them 2-0 up inside eight minutes to put them in pole position. They then had to wait until the final six minutes to add three more via Malte Hellwig, Florian Fuchs and Lukas Windfeder, punishing Ireland as they took off their goalkeeper for an extra outfielder.
Netherlands 6 (T Brinkman 2, M van der Weerden, B Bakker, J Janssen, M Pruijser) Scotland 0
The Netherlands topped Pool B with a 4-0 win over Scotland to advance to the semi-finals with a perfect record while the Scots will contest Pool C, hoping they can avoid relegation.
Early goals from Thierry Brinkman and Mink van der Weerden set them on their way and while Scotland defended hard, they could not prevent another four goals from breaking through their rearguard action.
Fixture schedule (times CET, all at Wilrijkse Pleinm Antwerp)
Wednesday, August 21
Pool A: England v Belarus, 10.00; Ireland v Germany, 12.15
Pool B: Netherlands v Russia, 18.00; Belgium v Spain, 20.30
Thursday, August 22
Men’s semi-finals: Netherlands v Spain, 18.00; Belgium v Germany, 20.30
Pool C: Wales v Scotland, 13.30; England v Ireland, 15.45