Image Courtesy: @TheHockeyIndia
In a match between two European powerhouses, Germany defeated the Netherlands with a dominating 4-1 margin to top the Pool D in the ongoing Men's Hockey World Cup at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar on Wednesday.
Germany took the attacking initiative in the first quarter as Christopher Ruhr made his way with a reverse hit but the Dutch goalkeeper Pirmin Blaak narrowed the angle and the ball crashed into the side-boarding. In the seventh minute, the German defence prevented Seve van Ass from having a shot at the goal.
Mirco Pruijser, in the 13th minute, opened the score-line for the Dutch side after a superb run from Valentin Verga into the smallest of spaces on the left side. The midfielder got to the baseline and crossed it across goalmouth where Pruijser was there to add the finishing touch.
In the second quarter, Christopher Ruhr showed some superb stick work to prepare his shot from the edge of the circle. However, three Dutch sticks surrounded him to prevent from shooting. From a clever penalty corner in the 30th minute, Mathias Muller equalised variation to level things for Germany just before the half-time.
The Dutch side, in the third quarter, won three penalty corners in a row. But it did not amount to any goal as the Germans managed to clear out the danger. Christopher Ruhr, in the 45th minute, found himself with large space inside the circle. Billy Bakker reached the penalty area at the other end, but German captain Martin Haner put an excellent tackle.
In the 52nd minute of the match, Lukas Windfeder gave his team the lead with a powerful drag-flick into the bottom right corner. Two minutes later, Marco Miltkau took another comfortable lead. As the Dutch buckled under the pressure, in the 58th minute Christopher Ruhr scored from a penalty stroke to seal the deal in a 4-1 victory over the Netherlands.
Germany will next take on Malaysia, while the Netherlands will play against Pakistan in their final Pool D fixture on December 9.