Hockey World Cup 2018 highlights: Belgium beats South Africa 5-1

Hockey World Cup 2018: Belgium vs South Africa: Alexander Hendrickx scored twice, while Simon Gougnard, Cedric Charlier and Loick Luypaert in a 5-1 win for Belgium. Nicholas Spooner scored for South Africa in the 1st minute at the Kalinga Stadium.

Belgium needs to have a better goal difference along with a win against South Africa in order to reach the quarterfinals.   -  Getty Images

Welcome to Sportstar's minute-by-minute commentary of the Hockey World Cup 2018 Pool C match of Belgium vs South Africa.


India has to beat Canada with a two-goal difference in order to directly qualify for the quarterfinals. Any other result will see Belgium enter the last-eight.

FULL-TIME: Belgium 5-1 South Africa

Fourth Quarter

60' There is a last-minute drama which could decide the outcome of the pool. Simon Gougnard puts the ball behind the South African goalkeeper, but the hooter goes off around at the same time indicating its full-time. The third umpire checks it and decides that the final goal was scores after the hooter went off.

58' It could well be the end of a sixth World Cup campaign for South Africa, but one more goal against Belgium will make things easier for India as the current scoreline requires Harendar Singh's men to win with a 2-0 margin to avoid cross-overs.

56' A cross from right flank flies into the penalty area but some poor trapping inside the circle prevents a chance.


53' South Africa goes on the counter and Julian Hykes wastes two chances to apply finishing touch at the far post.

50' Charlier's goal brings Belgium level on Goal Difference with India, but need to score more and hope that India does not score against Canada in the next match, to reach the quarterfinals directly.

48' GOAL BELGIUM! Cedric Charlier and Simon Gougnard combine as the former rolls a pass from the right, allowing Charlier to finish from close range in a crowded penalty area.

47' Cedric Charlier flashes a cross across the goalmouth but South Africa manages to keep it out. Nicholas Spooner gets a green card.

Third Quarter

45' Van Doren challenges the umpire's decision to award a penalty stroke to South Africa in the final seconds of Q3 and overturns the decision as replays show the defender's tackle was clean.

44' South Africa counter attacks as captain Drummond does well to get the ball to the baseline with a through ball, but Spooner makes a mess of his shot by slashing it over the crossbar.

Trivia: Belgium, who finished silver medallist at the 2016 Rio Olympics, won its first Olympic medal-- a bronze-- at the 1920 Olympics.

40' Alexander Hendrickx seems to have got his hat-trick with another dragflick, but the field umpire consults the third umpire and replays show that the ball was trapped inside the circle which makes Belgium's push-out invalid.

40' Tom Boon misses two chances to score, the second chance was relatively easier as he had just the goalkeeper to beat from close range.

37' Arthur van Doren shows some tricks to get past three South African players and brings it into the attacking half. Tom Boon is played into the penalty area, but he is unable to deflect the ball towards the goal.

35'  Belgium asks for a referral and wins a penalty corner. The umpire awards them another corner after Hendrickx's shot hits Tim Drummond's foot. The consequent corner is blocked successfully by Jethro Eustice.

31' South Africa's defence is looking more cohesive as it repels two Belgian attacks in the opening of Q3.

They will be hoping for a better scoreline by the end of fourth quarter


HALF-TIME: Belgium 4-1 South Africa

Second Quarter

30' GOAL BELGIUM! The South African defence gives away another cheap penalty corner and Loick Luypaert shoots through the goalkeeper's legs to make 4-1 for Belgium.

30' Cedric Charlier turns Tayler Dart inside out and shoots at the far post, but Rassie Pietersie makes a save to keep it out.

28' Arthur Van Doren comes up with a timely tackle to prevent Nqobile Ntuli  from getting near the goal. Belgium converts it into a counter, but Nicholas Spooner comes up with a diving tackle to cut out the pass from van Doren from the left side.

26' Belgium captain Thomas Briels almost scores a fourth but is blocked by the South African defenders at the near post.

22' BELGIUM 3-1! Alexander Hendrickx scores from the second penalty corner of the match with a finish at the bottom right corner. Belgium's lead will surely worry Indian fans as the quarterfinalist from Pool C is not decided until the end of second match today.


18' GOUGNARD PUTS BELGIUM IN THE FRONT! Simon Gougnard, who scored a late goal against India to earn a point for Belgium, scores yet again as he receives at pass from Felix Denayer from the edge of the circle and takes his time to finish at the far post. The South African defence fails to put any sort of pressure on him.

16' Dayaan Cassiem fails to score from two great chances from close range, one in the final seconds of the first quarter where failed to latch on to a loose ball inside the ball and the first minute of the second quarter where he shoots straight at the goal keeper after receiving an exquisite pass from the left flank.


First Quarter

13' BELGIUM EQUALISES! Belgium wins a penalty corner and Alexander Hendrickx opens the scoring like he did against India a dragflick into the bottom right.

11' Ntuli Nqobile gets a green card for interrupting a Belgian free hit from 25 metres.

8' South Africa is looking ominous now as the Belgians look rattled by th early. This time a pass from the right wing slices the Red Lions' defence open and Julian Hykes takes a shot at the far post which flies over the bar.

5' Cassiem runs down the left flank again and pings a cross from the baseline, but Vanasch blocks the attempts.

Can South Africa pull off an upset like this?


2' Nobody gave France a chance against Olympic champion Argentina two days and the World No. 20 put five goals behind the net and qualified for the cross-over. South Africa has to do something similar to write its destiny in this tournament.

1' GOAL SOUTH AFRICA! Belgium leave it completely open at the back as Nicholas Spooner controls a cross from left wing and finishes at the near post. Vincent Vanasch should have done better. What a start from South Africa!


1' We are off for the first match of the final round of Pool C matches.

Stakes on the match: Belgium will need to score at least five goals and will hope that India will not score any against Canada in order to reach the quarterfinals. For South Africa, a win is a must to keep its chances for the cross-overs alive and will hope that Canada will lose against India in the second match.


Match Trivia

  • South Africa’s last victory against Belgium came in December, 2009 where it beat the Red Lions 4-3 in the 5-8th place crossover match at the BDO Hockey Champions Challenge in Argentina.
  • The two sides faced each other at the World Cups thrice including two times at the 2002 Kaula Lumpur World Cup where South Africa came out victorious on both occasions.
  • Austin Smith is South Africa’s most experienced player with 164 international caps to this name.