(Photo: © EHL / Frank Uijlenbroek)

The first day of action of the new Euro Hockey League season witnessed no less than 27 goals in just four matches at HC Oranje Zwart, Eindhoven.

KHC Dragons (BEL) were the most impressive winners of the day, recording a 5-1 triumph over Izmaylovo Moscow (RUS). Rot-Weiss Köln (GER) and Pembroke Wanderers (IRL) were also winners, while Dinamo Kazan (RUS) and Pomorzanin Torun (POL) scored eight times and still could not be separated.

More information about these matches can be found below, with the action from EHL Round 1.1 continuing on Saturday.

Panther pounces to give Pembroke dramatic victory

Pembroke Wanderers got their Euro Hockey League Pool F campaign off to a winning start by defeating Olimpia Kolos Sekvoia 4-3, but needed a brace of late goals from Brandon Panther to kill of the fiercely competitive Ukrainian champions. With his team trailing 3-2 with just five minutes remaining, Panther scored from a penalty corner before slamming a ferocious reverse stick shot into the net to seal victory in the dying minutes.

“The win was important, as we have a fairly new team and it was a gelling experience for us”, said Pembroke’s Patrick Conlon. “It all came together in the end, but we don’t like to win them like that, to be honest with you.”

The win gave Pembroke a maximum of five points, sending them to the top of the Pool F table. Olimpia Kolos Sekvoia also claimed a point by virtue of not losing the match by more than two goals.

To read more on this match, click here.

Rot-Weiss edge Racing thanks to Montag double

Daniel Montag scored two goals on his Euro Hockey League debut to help Rot-Weiss Köln overcome Royal Racing Club de Bruxelles in the second match of the day here in Eindhoven.

Christopher Zeller scored his 14th goal in just five Euro Hockey League matches from the penalty spot before strikes from Daniel Montag and Robbert Kemperman extended the advantage from the German champions. Racing pulled a goal back thanks to a wonderful strike from Tom Boon but Montag’s second goal of the game all but sealed victory for Rot-Weiss. Boon netted again towards the end of the match, but Rot-Weiss held on for victory.

The win gave Rot-Weiss Köln five points, which puts them top of the Pool B table. It was not all bad news for RC Bruxelles, who claimed what could be a hugely valuable point by conceding less than three goals in the game.

RC Bruxelles coach Marcello Orlando was pleased with the performance of his team. Speaking to EHLHOCKEY.TV, Orlando said: “We played a good match. Rot-Weiss Köln are a very good team who are god in the circle. It was important to win a point today, and I am sure that we will play a good match tomorrow against Club de Campo.”

To read more on this match, click here.

Dragons hit five past Izmaylovo Moscow

Belgian champions KHC Dragons showed their EHL title ambitions with a crushing 5-1 victory over Izmaylovo Moscow in the third match of the day here at HC Oranje Zwart, Eindhoven. The win gives them a full five points to put them top of Pool E, giving them a fantastic chance of reaching Easter’s KO16 event. For Moscow, it seems likely that they will need to defeat reigning European champions UHC Hamburg if they are to have any chance of qualifying for the Knock-out phase.  

Dragons started the match in electric fashion, with former KHC Leuven player Renaud Pangrazio opening the scoring from close range before Izmaylovo’s Nikolay Komorov levelled against the run of play. However, goals from Florant van Aubel, Felix Denayer, Charles Vanderweghe and Giles Petre gave the boys from Braschaat a resounding and fully deserved victory.

KHC Dragons coach Colin Batch was pleased with the way his team had started their first ever Euro Hockey League match. “It was a nervous start to the game” said the former Australian international. “It took us a while to get going, and the Russians defended very well. The goal before half time settled the nerves, we relaxed and played well in the second half. Overall I’m very pleased with the result. We are looking forward to playing UHC Hamburg on Sunday.”

To read more on this match, click here.

Eight goals but no winner between Torun & Kazan

The final match of Day 1 witnessed an eight goal thriller, with EHL first timers KS Pomorzanin Torun producing a last quarter fight back to secure a 4-4 draw against Russian champions Dinamo Kazan.

Dinamo had trailed the Poles 2-1 at the end of a rainy first half, but established a 2-4 lead in the third quarter thanks to goals from Imran Warsi, Roman Sibaev and Arsen Gevorkyan. However, KS Pomorzanin Torun showed remarkable fighting spirit to secure a crucial draw thanks to a double penalty corner strike from Michal Nowakowski. 

The result gave both teams two points, meaning that they are tied at the top of Pool H. The chances of both teams progressing to KO16 will now be determined by their performances against Pool favourites and host club Oranje Zwart. 

To read more about this match, click here.

Video highlights of the first day of action from the EHL are available on the home page of the website: www.ehlhockey.tv