Hockey World Cup 2018: Netherlands, Germany win final pool matches

The Netherlands posted an empathic 5-1 over Pakistan, which made it to the crossovers of Hockey World Cup 2018 at the expense of Malaysia on goal difference. Germany, meanwhile, topped Pool D with a maximum of nine points.

The Netherlands celebrates its victory against Pakistan on Sunday. The Dutch team will face Canada in the crossovers.   -  Biswaranjan Rout

Fourth-ranked Netherlands’ organised effort helped it post an emphatic 5-1 win over Pakistan in its last Pool D match and secure a place in the crossovers of the 2018 Hockey World Cup at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar on Sunday.

Earlier, Germany recorded a hard-fought 5-3 win over Malaysia to finish as the top-ranked side in the pool with nine points and take a berth in the quarterfinals.

The Netherlands was second with six points. Pakistan, which was tied with Malaysia on one point, also got through to the crossovers on a better goal difference.

The Dutch team will face Canada while Pakistan will square off against Belgium in the crossovers on Tuesday.

The Netherlands relied on its fine distribution to enter the Pakistan circle frequently and jump to an early lead. An excellent move from the right by Thijs van Dam was finished well by an unmarked Thierry Brinkman.

Pakistan, ranked 13th in the world, replied quickly by winning three successive short corners. The third one yielded an equaliser as Umar Bhutta found the mark from close.

Valentina Verga scored in the 27th minute to give Netherlands 2-1 lead against Pakistan.   -  FIH Twitter

 

The Green Shirts challenged the Dutch while searching for more chances, but the Netherlands showed better coordination to keep the pressure on its opponent. One attempt surprised the gritty Pakistan defence as Valentin Verga shot from the top of the circle following a witty build-up before half-time.

The Oranje Machine struck again in the penultimate period when Jeroen Hertzberger, who received an aerial ball, passed it on to Bob de Voogd to widen the lead.

Jorrit Croon and Mink van der Weerden’s goals pleased the Netherlands while Pakistan tried in vain to catch up with the Dutch in the final quarter.

Germany, leading 4-3 after the third quarter, managed to thwart a spirited Malaysia, which got a couple of bookings but earned a penalty corner in the fourth period.

Results:

Germany 5 (Timm Herzbruch 2, 59; Christopher Ruhr 14; Marco Miltkau 18, 39) bt Malaysia 3 (Razie Rahim 26, 42; Nabil Noor 28); Netherlands 5 (Thierry Brinkman 7, Valentin Verga 27, Bob de Voogd 37, Jorrit Croon 47, Mink van der Weerden 59) bt Pakistan 1 (Umar Bhutta 9).