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News for 16 May 2021

All the news for Sunday 16 May 2021

2020-21 FIH Pro League (W) - 16 May
Sportcentrum Wilrijkse Plein-Antwerp

15 May 2021     BEL v USA (RR)   3 - 0
16 May 2021 17:30 (GMT +2)      BEL v USA (RR)

Live streaming and full game replay on the Watch Hockey App (May be Geo blocked if there is TV coverage)

Pool Standings

Rank Team Played Wins SO Win SO Loss Losses Goals For Goals Against Goal Difference Points Percent
1 Netherlands 11 8 1 0 1 32 7 25 29 87.9
2 Argentina 10 5 2 0 3 24 15 9 19 63.3
3 New Zealand 8 4 0 2 2 19 14 5 14 58.3
4 Germany 8 4 0 1 3 12 11 1 13 54.2
5 Australia 6 1 1 1 2 6 9 -3 9 50.0
6 Great Britain 10 3 2 1 3 14 13 1 14 46.7
7 Belgium 10 2 1 2 5 13 21 -8 10 33.3
8 China 2 0 0 0 2 2 7 -5 0 0.0
9 United States 7 0 0 0 6 5 30 -25 0 0.0

USA v NED (26.01.2020) worth double points because of the match cancelled on 24.01.2020
AUS v GBR (01.02.2020) worth double points because of the match cancelled on 02.02.2020

FIH Match Centre

Belgium’s Red Panthers overpower USA in Antwerp

Image courtesy of Hockey Belgium.

Belgium’s women produced a dominant display to emerge comfortable winners against a youthful but energetic USA team, with the Red Panthers powering to a 3-0 FIH Hockey Pro League victory in Antwerp.

It was Belgium’s second win of their 2020-21 campaign, with the team remainnig seventh in the standings but having improved their win percentage to 33.3 percent. USA remain bottom of the FIH Hockey Pro League table.

Fielding no fewer than five debutants, the Americans – playing their first FIH Hockey Pro League fixture since February 2020 due to the impact of the covid-19 global health pandemic – found themselves defending for large parts of the game, with the hosts dominating possession and territory whilst also creating numerous goal-scoring opportunities.  Striker Ambre Ballenghien could have easily had a first half hat-trick were it not for some brilliant goalkeeping from USA custodian Kelsey Bing, who was beaten only once in the first two quarters when Abi Raye deflected home from close range.

Belgium continued to dominate after the break and added goals thanks to a Tiphaine Duquesne penalty corner before Reye netted her second of the match two minutes from the end of the contest.

"I think we should be very happy with this game, there are lots of positive to take from it”, said Belgium midfielder Judith Vandermeiren, who was named Player of the Match. “It was nice for the team to have a rhythm again, as it has been a long time since we played together. I'm happy to have the three points today."

On the return to international action of goalkeeper Aisling D'Hooghe just months after having her first child, Vandermeiren said: "I'm super happy for her, that she played her first game [since giving birth]. She is still one of the best goalkeepers in the world, so I'm happy to have her back in the team."

USA captain Amanda Magadan said: "It has been a long time since we were able to play an international hockey game, so it was really fun to get back out there on the pitch. We have some things to work on, some learnings to take from this game, so that is good that we can go back now and watch the film [of the match] and come back out strong tomorrow."

More information can be found by clicking here.

The two nations will take to the field in Antwerp for a second time on Sunday 16 May.

Keep up to date with all the latest news on the FIH Hockey Pro League via the Watch.Hockey app, event website and through FIH social media channels - Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

FIH Hockey Pro League
Saturday 15 May 2021 – Antwerp (BEL)

Belgium 3, USA 0 [Match 1 of 2]
Player of the Match: Judith Vandermeiren (BEL)
Umpires: Laurine Delforge (BEL), Celine Martin-Schmets (BEL) and Michelle Meister (GER - video)


Official FIH Pro League Site

USWNT Falls to Belgium in First FIH Hockey Pro League Match of 2021

Image Taken by FIH

ANTWERP, Belgium - In their first game since February 2020 and first under the leadership of head coach Anthony Farry, the No. 15 U.S. Women’s National Team were unable to withstand a well-balanced attack from No. 12 Belgium in their first of two games this weekend in the FIH Hockey Pro League. After a scoreless first quarter, the Red Panthers tallied once in each of the remaining frames to defeat USA, 0-3.

The opening minute saw USA start quick. Beth Yeager (Rye, N.Y.) used speed to break through into the attacking 25 and pass it ahead to Danielle Grega (Kingston, Pa.). Although it went into the goal, Grega was unable to get a touch on it. For the remainder of the quarter Belgium held much of the possession and goalkeeper Kelsey Bing (Houston, Texas) absorbed a handful of subsequent threats. USA had a close chance in the 12th minute when Grega picked a Belgium defender and passed it across to Amanda Magadan (Randolph, N.J.), but she was unable to connect in front of the goal. A late chance for Belgium’s Judith Vandermeiren was saved by Bing as the quarter ended with the deadlock unbroken.

The Red Panthers continued their momentum into the second quarter, earning a penalty corner within the first minute. Blocked by Bing, USA used quick transition as Miranda Rigg (Fredericksburg, Va.) passed ahead to Lauren Moyer (York, Pa.) who ripped a backhand shot that was saved by Belgium’s goalkeeper Aisling D’Hooghe. That offensive run was short-lived when Belgium immediately countered, and Justine Rasir sent a perfect sweep in front of the goal that was deflected into the net by Abi Raye to give the Red Panthers the 0-1 lead. Back-to-back penalty corner attempts by Stephanie Vanden Borre were blocked by fly Linnea Gonzales (Bel Air, Md.) and saved by Bing as Belgium continued to threaten. Attacker Ambre Ballenghien saw two chances go unanswered as she missed a deflection off the right post and Bing denied a solid, low strike to keep the game 0-1 at halftime.

It took 3 minutes into the third quarter for Belgium to extend their lead when Tiphaine Duquesne buried a sweep off a penalty corner to make it 0-2. USA found themselves playing a lot of time on defense, behind the command of USA goalkeeper Keaslie Robles (Yorktown, Va.), as the Red Panthers controlled the physicality of the frame. Rigg had a good look on goal and a few circle entries saw USA unable to find an outcome.

Belgium remained on the front foot and added another goal late in the fourth quarter. Following two USA cards - a green card issued to Laura Hurff (Newark, Del.) and a 5-minute yellow to Magadan - the Red Panthers had two penalty corners go unanswered before Raye netted her second of the game with a finish to the left with 2 minutes remaining. Although trailing 0-3 and with time ticking down, the red, white and blue continued to push as Alyssa Parker (Woodbine, Md.) recorded a backhand shot in the ended seconds but the score line remained 0-3.

“It’s been a long time since we have been able to play an international [field] hockey game,” said Magadan, USWNT Captain. “It was fun to get back out there on the pitch. We have some things to work on, some learnings to take from the game, so that is good that we can go back now and watch the film [of the match] and come back out strong tomorrow.”

Following the game, Belgium’s midfielder Judith Vandermeiren was named Player of the Match.

Today’s contest marked career milestones for six USA athletes as Maddie Bacskai (Berwyn, Pa.), Kelsey Briddell (Gansevoort, N.Y.), Haley Randall (née Schleicher) (Virginia Beach, Va.), Miranda Rigg (Fredericksburg, Va.), Jillian Wolgemuth (Mount Joy, Pa.) and Beth Yeager (Rye, N.Y.) all played in their first international cap.

USWNT athletes Miranda Rigg, Maddie Bacskai, Jillian Wolgemuth, Beth Yeager (top), Kelsey Briddel and Haley Randall (bottom) all earn their first international cap

In less than 24 hours, the U.S. Women’s National Team will return to action to take on No. 12 Belgium in their second game of their double-header weekend at 11:30 a.m. ET.

USFHA media release

Belgium’s women comfortably defeat United States as Americans make FIH Pro League return

By Neil Shefferd

Belgium's women ran out a comfortable 3-0 victory over the United States in the women's FIH Pro League in Antwerp ©FIH

Belgium’s women comfortably beat the United States as the Americans played their first match in the International Hockey Federation Pro League since February 2020.

The Red Panthers took a 17th minute lead through Abi Raye’s deflected strike as they dominated the first half, creating multiple goalscoring opportunities and enjoying the majority of possession.

Belgium’s dominance continued early in the second half against an inexperienced American side featuring five debutants, with Tiphaine Duquesne making it 2-0 from a penalty corner just after the interval.

Belgium put late gloss on the scoreline as Raye’s second of the match sealed a 3-0 win, which could have been by a bigger margin but for the efforts of US keeper Kelsey Bing.

The result maintains Belgium’s seventh place in the standings and improves their win percentage to 33.33 per cent from ten games, while the US remain bottom of the table with zero points from seven matches.

China are also on zero points but have only played two matches due to travel restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Belgium and the US are due to meet in the second of their double-header at the Sportcentrum Wilrijkse Plein-Antwerp tomorrow.

Points percentage will be used to determine the final standings in the Pro League this season as several matches are not expected to be completed, because of the pandemic.

The number of points won over the maximum number of points available in the games a team has played will be used to determine points percentage.

Inside the Games

Ireland Claims 5-1 Victory Over Scotland in First of Two Match Series in Final Prep for Europeans in June.

A short period of scattered play got the match marked off in the opening minutes before Deirdre Duke managed to strike from just inside the top of the circle and catch Scotland’s keeper off-guard. Hannah McLoughlin had the next opportunity of the match, applying pressure in the Scottish circle, but failed to convert it to the scoreboard. However, a penalty corner to Ireland with less than two minutes left in the first quarter saw Evans insert, deflection from McLoughlin before an Upton goal increased the lead to 2-0.

Malseed increased the Irish lead again in the opening minutes of the second quarter, and it wasn’t long before she was back pressing on the Scottish circle again. Scotland’s Burnet returned the challenge on the Irish circle moments later, but McFerran saved and pushed the ball back up the pitch where Ireland was awarded a penalty corner shortly afterwards. This time a shot from McLoughlin was saved and pushed out by the Scottish goalkeeper.

Scotland’s Sabatelli managed to create a chance for herself in front of the Irish goal. McFerran dived to save but the strike went wide of the mark. Caoimhe Perdue and Sarah McAuley played well throughout the second quarter before Katie Mullan created a chance for Naomi Carroll which was ultimately defended out. A penalty corner for Scotland saw Jamieson’s shot defended on the line by Shirley McCay, but the Burnet found the rebound to finally put Scotland on the scoreboard ahead of the half-time whistle went with a 3-1 lead to Ireland.

O’Flanagan and Evans pushed hard from the whistle to attack the Scotland defence, however, the eventual shot on the goal went too high. Michelle Carey was on form with a number of precise interventions, stealing possession back from Scotland on a number of occasions. The third quarter provided several chances for both sides. A flurry of chances for Ireland failed to return a goal, while McFerran saved two attempts from Scotland. An eventual cross circle shot from Duke was met perfectly by Carey who tapped it over the line to bring the score to Ireland 4-1 Scotland.

The final quarter saw a Watkins shot bounce off the Scotland keeper before Evans secured the rebound making it 5-1 to the hots. Sarah McAuley made her presence known to the Scottish attackers deftly intercepting as they approached the Irish circle. Scotland failed to convert their final penalty corner chance, while O’Flanagan shot wide in Ireland’s last real chance of the game. Scotland pressed in the final two minutes, however, fumbled in the circle and McFerran was able to kick the ball from harm’s way. Full-time score Ireland 5-1 Scotland.

Ireland 5 (Duke, Upton, Malseed, Carey, Evans), Scotland 1 (Burnet).

Ireland: M Carey, N Carroll, L Colvin, D Duke, N Evans, S Hawkshaw, Z Malseed, S McAuley, A McFerran, S McCay, H McLoughlin, K Mullan, E Murphy, A O’Flanagan, C Perdue, R Upton, C Watkins.

Scotland: M Bell, J Buchanan, F Burnet, L Camlin, L Campbell, R Collins, B Condie, E Dark, J Eadie, K Holmes, S Jamieson, H McEwan, H Howie, K Robertson, L Sabatelli, F Semple, B Shields, M Steiger, E Wilson, B Ward.

Irish Hockey Association media release

Five-star Ireland too strong for Scotland

Ireland celebrate a Zara Malseed goal. Pic: Adrian Boehm

Ireland’s women won the first of their two games against Scotland this weekend with something to spare with a 5-1 win at Queen’s ahead of this week’s European Championship squad selection.

Reflecting on the tie, Shirley McCay told BBC NI it was a good outing for the Green Army after a couple of tough defeats against GB recently

“We’ve had a few tough games in recent months and its good to get another chance to play against top quality opposition and build a bit of confidence, have some time on the ball as well. Really good to some nice goals.

“We’re building nicely and the thing is everyone is in the same place. We have done our best to do what we can with what we have. The morale and camaraderie in the squad is really high; we have a couple of niggles but that will be the same for every squad in the next couple of months.”

On that front, Sean Dancer shuffled his deck with Hannah Matthews, Megan Frazer, Lena Tice and Nicci Daly not playing this time while Sarah Hawkshaw – after sustaining a swollen cheek in midweek – only played the second half.

Nonetheless, Ireland ran up a 3-0 lead in quick time. Deirdre Duke’s powerful shot broke the deadlock before Roisin Upton’s low drag found the left-hand corner of the backboard.

Zara Malseed’s ferocious instincts in the circle were on display when she robbed possession and, quick as a flash, banged in a shot on her reverse.

Fiona Burnet pulled one back for Scotland before half-time from a corner rebound after a strong initial save from the returning Ayeisha McFerran.

Ireland, though, held sway in the second half with Michelle Carey guiding in a Duke cross from the left for 4-1 and Nikki Evans snapped up the fifth, a sharp volley following Chloe Watkins’ brilliant piece of perseverance and skill created the opening.

After this series, the two sides will meet again in the second match of the Euros but more than likely with augmented squads. Scotland have a couple of GB panelists to comeback while Ireland have a number of injury issues they hope will smooth out in the coming weeks.

“The Europeans is as important, if not more so, for us going forward over the next few years for the country and for women’s hockey in Ireland,” McCay concluded about the tournament ahead from which Ireland will need a strong performance to land one of the World Cup spots on offer.

“It’s a special tournament and one of the toughest, if not the toughest, tournaments you can play in. We are privileged to be part of the A division for the future of Irish hockey.”

Game two is on Sunday at 1.30pm.

Women’s Senior international test match

Ireland 5 (D Duke, R Upton, Z Malseed, M Carey, N Evans) Scotland 1 (F Burnet)

Ireland: M Carey, N Carroll, L Colvin, D Duke, N Evans, S Hawkshaw, Z Malseed, S McAuley, A McFerran, S McCay, H McLoughlin, K Mullan, L Murphy, A O’Flanagan, C Perdue, R Upton, C Watkins.

Scotland: M Bell, J Buchanan, F Burnet, L Camlin, L Campbell, R Collins, B Condie, E Dark, J Eadie, K Holmes, S Jamieson, H McEwan, H Howie, K Robertson, L Sabatelli, F Semple, B Shields, M Steiger, E Wilson, B Ward.

The Hook

India women's hockey team can create history at Games, says ex-goalkeeper Helen Mary

The Indian women's team has made rapid strides at the world level with significant performances in major tournaments over the past three to four years.

India women's hockey team. Image: Hockey India

New Delhi: Fine-tuning a few aspects of their game in the run-up to the Olympics will help the Indian women's hockey players create history by finishing on the podium in the marquee event, according to former goalkeeper Helen Mary.

The Indian women's team has made rapid strides at the world level with significant performances in major tournaments over the past three to four years.

"The way they played in Argentina and Germany recently, I feel they are 90 per cent ready, some fine tuning of their game in the upcoming weeks and I surely believe they can create history in Tokyo. The tri-colours will fly high in Tokyo," Helen said on a Hockey Indian podcast "Hockey Te Charcha'.

"The way they played in Argentina recently, even though they couldn't register a win against the world No 2 squad, the style they played and the confidence they showed while playing against the home team on their home ground, was something I have never seen in them before," she added.

Helen, who had closely worked with the Indian women's side ahead of the Rio Olympics as the team's goalkeeping coach, made her international debut in 1992.

In her career spanning over a decade, she contributed to the team's success at several top international tournaments, including the historic golds in the 2002 Commonwealth Games and 2004 Asia Cup, silver at the 1998 Asian Games among several other feats.

Drawing comparison to the support system they had during her heyday to the current Indian set up, Helen said that there is a more systematic and scientific approach in place now.

"There is a stark difference in how the teams train today and how we trained. The approach they have now is very scientific and it's great that the team has a big support staff who look into every small detail right from fitness, diet, recovery to workload every week.

"Everything is planned in advance and each player's progress is mapped on a day-to-day basis. I sometimes regret that we didn't have this kind of systematic approach when we played."

The former custodian also spoke about former player and coach MK Kaushik who died after battling COVID-19 last week.

"He was our godfather. He was responsible for moulding our careers. He showed us the right path in hockey.

"He was a true task master. We were so disciplined because he was that strict and I would say it was this discipline that he had inculcated in us that made us a successful team."


Den Bosch and Bloemendaal claim Dutch league hockey titles

A penalty corner in the last minute from Dutch dangerwoman Frederique Matla secured Den Bosch the domestic title for the 20th time in the club’s history on Saturday.

Matla made sure Den Bosch regained the Hoofdklasse title at the hands of old rivals Amsterdam with a last-gasp strike to spark wild celebrations.

Since first winning the women’s title in 1998, they have won every season bar three. In the last two seasons, Matla has netted 49 times.

It was a fitting ending to coach Raoul Ehren’s tenure. He will now take over the head coach role with Belgium full-time this summer after also making it eight Euro titles since 2009 as head coach.

There was, though, a downside in victory after Lidewij Welten suffered a hamstring late on and is now a serious doubt for the Olympics.

With the EuroHockey Championships almost certainly ruled out, Welten admitted: “Making it to the Olympic Games will be difficult.”

Bloemendaal retained their men’s Hoofdklasse title on Saturday thanks to a Thierry Brinkman double and a shoot-out win over Kampong.

Just like the first tie in midweek, Bloemendaal and Kampong finished at 2-2 before the orange men won 3-1 in the shoot-out.

In a relatively uneventful encounter, the match lit up in the final quarter when Floris de Ridder needlessly poked Brinkman in the stomach with his stick and was shown red.

Brinkman then scored his second a minute before end of normal time and scored Bloemendaal’s second in the shoot-out as the champions won 3-1 from the 23m line.

In a repeat of th 2018/19 final – Kampong had also won the two previous national titles – coach Roelant Oltmans had to make do without the suspended Sander de Wijn and the injured keeper David Harte.

Alexander Hendrickx, of Pinoké, finished as the season’s top scorer with 21.

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