The Red Panthers lost 3-1 to the defending Olympic and World No. 1 team Netherlands on Wednesday night in Amstelveen. It was the last game of the year for the Belgian national women’s hockey team.
Alix Gerniers, injured, and with seven players under 21 who will participate in three weeks at the Junior World Cup in South Africa, Belgium (FIH-7) clearly dominated the first quarter, but without power find the loophole in the opposing circle despite three penalty corners (pc). The fourth, at the very start of the 2nd quarter, allowed Stéphanie Vanden Borre to open the scoring with dragflick halfway up (16th, 0-1).
Raoul Ehren’s players then retreated, conceding four pc, all well blocked by the Belgian defence. It was only after the rest that the world No. 1, undefeated in 2021 (20 successes in a row), showed their offensive qualities. Via Joosje Burg first (33rd, 1-1), on a close recovery in front of Aisling D’Hooghe. Thanks to Freeke Moes three minutes later (36th, 2-1) and, finally, on a centre taken over by Lidewijn Welten (38th, 3-1).
With 6 points out of 12, Belgium still occupies the provisional 2nd place of the third edition of the Women’s Hockey Pro League behind their opponents of the day. Six of the nine participating nations have yet to play. The Panthers were beaten 2-0 by the Dutch Olympic champions in the inaugural match, on October 13, before winning twice in front of Germany (1-0 and 3-1), on October 16 and 17, in Uccle. They will resume competition on February 12 and 13 in South America in a double confrontation against Argentina, Olympic finalist.
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