Netherlands win Champions Trophy

Dutch hockey players celebrate on the podium after winning the final against Argentina during the women's Champions Trophy final in Amsterdam, Netherlands, on Sunday. (AP)

The Netherlands won the women’s field hockey Champions Trophy 6-5 on penalties in Amsterdam on Sunday, after regular time and 15 minutes of extra time failed to break the 3-3 deadlock with Argentina.

Argentina made the final by winning a protest against South Korea’s inclusion in the final, pushing South Korea out of the final and into the bronze medal game against New Zealand.

Argentina stunned Netherlands when Carla Rebecchi scored in the first half minute.

Netherlands pressed in the South Americans’ defensive quarter for long periods until Argentina broke out late in the first half to convert two penalty corners.

Luciana Aymar took a rebound off Joyce Sombroek, Netherlands goalkeeper, and made a backstick flick over Sombroek into goal.

Daniela Sruoga put Argentina 3-0 ahead three minutes later, a minute before the break.
Maartje Paumen started Netherlands long road back, converting a penalty corner high inside the right post after the hooter for the break.

The Maartje Paumen scoring machine continued early in the second, relying on Netherlands high press on Argentina to earn three more penalty corners.

Maartje Paumen converting two penalty corners early in the second half to equal the score at 3-3.

The game opened immediately and became free flowing in the midfield as both teams went for the winning goal.

Netherlands held more possession as both teams failed to break the deadlock.

Extra time of 15 minutes of golden goal play also failed to break the deadlock and the match was decided by a penalty shoot out.

For the first time at a Champions Trophy, the penalty shoot out took the form of a competition between a player at the 23 metre line having 8 seconds to score or the goalkeeper to prevent a goal.

Willemijn Bos, Eva de Goede, and Maartje Paumen scored for Netherlands and Carlien Dirske van den Heuvel missed her chance to score.

Soledad Garcia, and Delfina Marino scored for Argentina and misses were made by Carla Rebecchi, Luciana Aymar and Daniela Sruoga.

As Daniela Sruoga missed her shot, Netherlands team and support staff rushed onto the pitch and celebrated.

Carlos Retegui was pleased with the performance of his young team.

“The team has changed a lot since we won the World Cup in Argentina (September 2010) so I am happy that we could get a result with such a young team and that we are still one of the top teams in the world,” Retegui said.

Max Caldas, Netherlands coach, admitted Argentina surprised Netherlands early in the game.

“The jumped on us by scoring three goals with the first three chances they had in the game and we found ourselves down 3-0,” Caldas said.

“The team remained calm and we worked our way back into the game,” Caldas said.
“We made a fantastic game of it for the public,” Caldas added.

New Zealand won the bronze medal 3-2 over South Korea for its first Champions Trophy medal.

England beat Australia 2-0 to take fifth place and China won 5-3 over Germany for seventh place.


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