|March 11th, 2010|
|33||Semifinal||8:30pm||AUS - NED||2 - 1 (1 - 0)||Final|
The second semi-final started at full speed and the first opportunity was for Australia when Grant SCHUBERT managed a shot from close range, saved by Guus VOGELS in the DUTCH goal... with his helmet. The Kookaburras maintained their pressure and the same player had another chance from close range but Guus VOGELS managed again another brilliant save.
The game was fast paced from end-to-end and both teams were giving a sumptuous display of technical skills executed at high speed and under constant pressure. Rogier HOFMAN threatened Nathan BURGERS in the Australian goal with a reverse shot from a narrow angle that went marginally over the crossbar but most opportunities were in the Dutch circles, with Jamie DWYER and Edward OCKENDEN very active. The Netherlands forced a penalty-corner somewhat against the run of play but Jeroen HERTZBERGER could not convert.
Teun DE NOOIJER propelled a rocket just wide of the Australian goal, then on the next play Desmond ABBOTT forced a penalty-corner with an instant pivot followed by a shot stopped by a defender’s foot, and Luke DOERNER made no mistake to open the scoring in the 27th minute, taking the lead of the Top Goal Scorers of the competition with 7 goals. Both the Netherlands and Australia had another penalty-corner in the final stages but could not control it and this exciting first period ended with a narrow, but deserved, one-goal lead for Australia.
Second period started with an immediate chance for Desmond ABBOTT. The Kookaburras were progressing up field with quick passes that were often turning the heads of the Dutch midfield and defense. The Dutch were frequently a step slower and collected two green cards for late tackles. There were many boiling hot situations in front of Guus VOGELS, but no resulting goals and the Dutch were still within striking distance.
The Kookaburras were finally rewarded of their intense pressure in the 55th minute with a goal by Glenn TURNER at the conclusion of a long series of passes in the Dutch circle. Their joy was however short lived as a Dutch penalty-corner a few minutes later evolved in a penalty-stroke cleanly converted by Taeke TAEKEMA. With ten minutes to go, the momentum shifted and The Netherlands, vocally pushed by their fans outfitted in orange, threw everything they had towards the Australian circle. A long high ball found Teun DE NOOIJER behind the defense but Nathan BURGERS was waiting for him at the top of the circle.
With time passing, it seemed more difficult for the Dutch to penetrate the compact and solid Australian defense and Australia won this sumptuous game to set-up the third Final in a row between Australia and Germany!
Match Facts (Australia v. Netherlands):
> Australia secured their fourth World Cup final berth and their third in succession, as did Germany.
> Only Pakistan (6) and The Netherlands (5) have played more World Cup finals.
> This will be the third successive time Australia face Germany in the World Cup final. The Kookaburras lost to Germany in both 2002 and 2006.
> Australia are now unbeaten in 10 successive matches against the Netherlands at major tournament (OG, WC and CT).
> Australia became the fourth team to reach three successive World Cup finals joining Germany (2002-2010), Pakistan (1975-1982) and Netherlands (1990-1998).
> Liam De Young is the only player on the current squad to have played in Australia’s two previous WC finals.
> Luke Doerner (AUS) and Taeke Taekema (NED) are now tied on7 goals atop of the goal scorer table.
> Luke Doerner has now equalled the total number of goals by his current coach Ric Charlesworth in the 1986 World Cup (7).
> Taekema became only the third player ever to reach 20 World Cup goals. Taekema needs one more goals to equal Ties Kruize (NED, 21 goals) and 6 goals to equal all-time WC top scorer Paul Litjens (NED, 26 goals).
> The Netherlands play England in the Bronze medal match, which will see Dutch captain Teun de Nooijer chasing a record equaling fourth World Cup medal.
> The only player so far to have won four World Cup medals is Pakistan’s Akhtar Rasool.