The men’s team of The Netherlands defeated Great Britain 3-1 in a friendly match on Wednesday. The clash between the two Samsung Champions Trophy participant was for Great Britain the start for the training preparation for the Samsung Men’s Champions Trophy and Olympic Qualifier in Santiago, Chile.
The game finished 3-1 to the Netherlands, late goals in both halves proving the difference for the EuroHockey Nations Championships champions. Alastair Wilson was amongst twelve others earning their first GB cap tonight. For George Pinner though his will perhaps be most special since it comes before his first home nation cap for England.
The game was evenly matched in the first half, a quick paced game with attacking opportunities for both sides, GB squandered two first half penalty corners before the Netherlands hit twice before the half. Goals from de Nooijer and Brouwer from open play significantly altered the game before the half, turning a fairly even game into one that forced GB to chase in the second half.
It was the Dutch, however, that came out the stronger after half time, pinning back the GB team in the first ten minutes unsettling their plans to get back into the game. Gradually GB began to find their passing play and edge their way back into contention. In the 50th minute, Stephen Dick grabbed the vital goal after deflecting a cross from the right wing, and from there on GB pushed for the equaliser. They enjoyed as much of the general play as their counterparts and looked like grabbing an equaliser. Those hopes were dashed when who else but Taeke Taekema converted a penalty corner in the last minute of the game to end the match with a scoreline that flattered the Dutch.
GB will not have been disheartened by the outcome, the teams were evenly matched and enjoyed their share of possession, and both were awarded three corners apiece. The game enjoyed a festive atmosphere at Uden HC in Eindhoven, the club celebrating their 50th year attracting an attendance in the region of 2,000.
Coach Jason Lee commented, “We were disappointed to lose, but the Netherlands were perhaps the better side on the day. It was important to integrate the Scottish players into the side quickly, we have achieved that and the players are clearly making the group stronger. The important thing now is to build the team further and work towards seeing better results.”
Netherlands – Great Britain 3-1 (2-0)
33. De Nooijer 1-0 (F), 35. Brouwer 2-0 (F), 50. Dick 2-1 (F), 70. Taekema 3-1 (PC)
Source: Great Britain Hockey Limited.
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