Hockey World Cup: Germany lifts title after penalty shootout win, Netherlands finishes 3rd

Germany overturned a 2-0 deficit before defeating Belgium in a penalty shootout. Netherlands defeated Australia 3-1 in the 3rd place playoff.

Published : Jan 29, 2023 22:30 IST , BHUBANESWAR

Germany’s players celebrate with the trophy after winning the FIH men’s Hockey World Cup 2023.
Germany’s players celebrate with the trophy after winning the FIH men’s Hockey World Cup 2023. | Photo Credit: AFP

Germany’s players celebrate with the trophy after winning the FIH men’s Hockey World Cup 2023. | Photo Credit: AFP

Germany rode its momentum and belief on Sunday, prevailing in the shootouts for the second time in three games, to lift its third world title here with a 5-4 win in sudden death against defending champion Belgium after the teams were tied 3-3 in regulation time.

HIGHLIGHTS | Germany vs Belgium Final

Having finished out of the medal bracket last time, this was a German side that came through the hard way and proved itself as perhaps mentally the toughest side in world hockey today. The previous meeting between the sides in the pool stage had ended in a draw and there was no separating them in the last match of the World Cup as well with the sides dominating a half each. Germany took time to come into the game but once it did, the Belgians found little time or space to breathe.

As it did in the quarters and semifinals, Germany, in the second half, upped the pace and opened spaces through the middle, shifting from its runs down the flanks in the first. It worked and Germany’s sixth penalty corner of the match in the 41st minute saw Gonzalo Peillat sounding the board to level. Peillat, in fact, earned the unique distinction of becoming the first player to win the Olympics and the World Cup with two separate teams. Seven minutes later, captain Mats Grambusch put Germany ahead before Tom Boon did a Germany to the Germans and scored with less than two minutes to take the game into shootout.

The first 30 minutes, though, were all about Belgium. Despite three penalty corners, Germany barely got a shot at goal. The Belgians dominated both possession and proceedings and even a penalty stroke in the 20th minute was thwarted, Vincent Vanasch getting a stick to the ball.

Wave after wave of Belgian attack paid off when Antoine Kina sent a long pass right through the centre of the field in the 10th minute, which Florent van Aubel slapped into the net from top of the circle. A minute later, Kina was again in the mix, sending an acute pass beating goalkeeper Alexander Stadler and a defender for Tanguy Cosyns to tap in the softest of deflections.

Earlier in the day, Netherlands halted Australia’s medal run in World Cups with a comfortable 3-1 win in the bronze medal play-off. Australia never looked comfortable despite an early lead and the Dutch took control, scoring thrice in a period of seven minutes in the 3rd quarter to seal the deal. This is the first time in six editions that Australia will return empty-handed from the competition, the last time being in 1998.

Final: Germany (Niklas Wellen, Gonzalo Peillat, Mats Grambusch) bt Belgium (Florent van Aubel, Tanguy Cosyns, Tom Boon) in shootouts (5-4);
3rd place play-off: Netherlands 3 (Thierry Brinkman 2, Jip Janssen) bt Australia 1 (Jeremy Hayward)
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