Netherlands was expected to saunter to victory against Chile in its final Pool C match, and the Dutch duly obliged, registering a 14-0 win against the hapless South American debutant to finish on top of the pool. It becomes the first team to qualify for the quarterfinals at the Hockey World Cup on Thursday.
It was the biggest-ever margin of defeat in the World Cup, bettering Australia’s 12-0 hammering of South Africa in the 2010 edition, also hosted by India in New Delhi. The goal-fest began in the seventh minute with Jip Janssen converting the first penalty corner (PC) of the match. Holland earned two more through the first quarter, but Chile defended well. The Chileans were at their best in the first 15 minutes, crowding their circle to thwart the Dutch. But that was what they could do as Holland, apparently warmed up enough, got down to business.
Four goals in eight minutes, three PCs and 61 per cent possession in the opposition half underlined their superiority at half-time. It only got better for the Dutch – and exponentially worse for Chile – who added six goals in the third quarter and three in the fourth, Teun Beins putting Holland’s 17th PC into the roof for the new record in the 49th minute.
Malaysia edges past New Zealand
In the other Pool C match, Malaysia upturned its form to upset New Zealand 3-2 and finish second in the pool. Tied on points, Malaysia started aggressively, making its intentions clear with a PC in the seventh minute. But it took the slightest touch from Faizal Saari to Shello Silverius’s hit to put the Asians ahead two minutes later.
Malaysia’s victory was orchestrated and executed by its experienced trio of Saari, captain Marhan Jalil and the veteran Razie Rahim – leading the attack, midfield and defence, respectively. They set the bar for the younger players, especially, Jalil, who constantly kept the passage to the front open with incisive passes for Malaysia to lead 1-0 at half time.
New Zealand was unable to breach a disciplined defence for three-quarters of the game. It was only in the final 15 minutes that the Black Sticks showed more urgency, scoring two goals in as many minutes – Sam Lane scoring the second for the 2500th World Cup goal – to level scores. But with New Zealand putting all its energies upfront, an absent defence meant Saari had all the time in the world to put it through goalkeeper Dominic Dixon’s legs three minutes from time.