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Date
03 Aug 2012
Tags
London 2012 , IOC News , Hockey

Goals galore for Hockey men - London 2012 - Hockey

There were plenty of goals on another exciting day in the men's Hockey competition, with big wins for the Netherlands and Germany that put them both on the verge of qualification to the semi-finals.

The Netherlands strengthened their position at the top of Pool B with their first convincing victory of the tournament, 5-1 against New Zealand.

New Zealand began well when Nick Wilson crossed for Simon Child to score from close range.

The Netherlands thought they had equalised when Sander de Wijn, sliding on his knees, brilliantly turned in Teun de Nooijer's lifted shot, but his effort was ruled out as his stick was above his shoulder.

It did not take long for the Dutch to ease past the Black Sticks, though, as De Wijn's short corner rebound hit Blair Hopping's body on the way to goal and Roderick Weusthof converted the penalty stroke.

The Netherlands scored again from the spot in the 27th minute after a foul by Ryan Archibald allowed Mink van der Weerden to slot home his fourth of the tournament.

Within three minutes, the advantage became three as Rogier Hofman picked up a long through-ball to race into the circle and square for Billy Bakker to force the ball home.

Bob de Voogd then hit the post as the Netherlands finished the half strongly, but after the break the game evened out and New Zealand briefly threatened before the Netherlands made certain of victory with 15 minutes remaining.

Picking up the ball in midfield, the Dutch launched a quick attack in which Hofman slipped the ball to Bakker, who beat goalkeeper Kyle Pontifex with a low flick.

Robbert Kemperman rounded off the scoring with a ferocious low reverse-stick shot across the goalkeeper and inside the far post.

Germany produced their best performance of the tournament so far as they blew away eight-time champions India 5-2, thanks to a four-goal first-half display.

Florian Fuchs was the star of the show with a hat-trick, completing it seconds after the interval as India slumped to a third successive defeat and out of medal contention.

Earlier in the day, Argentina sprang a major surprise by taking a point off Australia from a 2-2 draw as the world number ones showed they were not infallible in conceding a 2-0 half-time lead.

Even five-time world player of the year Jamie Dwyer breaking the Kookaburras all-time goalscoring record with his fourth of the tournament - taking his tally to 180 in 281 matches - was little consolation for dropping two points. Having scored 11 goals without conceding in their opening two Pool A victories, everything seemed to be going to plan again at the interval.

Matt Butturini picked up a penalty corner rebound to open the scoring in the 11th minute and then Dwyer added his record-breaking goal in unspectacular style seconds before half-time. But Argentina, who have only ever beaten Australia once before at the Olympic Games in 1976, produced a rally after the break on the back of some impressive goalkeeping by Juan Manuel Vivaldi.

Great Britain midfielder Ashley Jackson inspired his side to a comfortable 4-1 victory over Pakistan with a performance befitting his stature as one of the world's top players.

The 24-year-old was at the heart of almost everything as the hosts rediscovered their attacking flair, contributing two second-half goals to ensure there was no repeat of their late capitulation against South Africa.

Injury-hit Spain survived a late rally by South Africa to record their first victory, 3-2, which keeps alive their slender semi-final hopes in Pool A, while Belgium's Cedric Charlier scored a fine winning goal as his side belied their low world ranking to stun Republic of Korea 2-1.

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