Bhubaneswar, Dec 14 (IANS)
The Netherlands salvaged a fifth place finish at the Hero Hockey Champions Trophy with a 4-1 win over Argentina, scoring four times in the final quarter to turn things around at the Kalinga Stadium here Sunday. The first quarter saw very few scoring opportunities for either side with the Dutch mostly in possession of the ball and Argentina lying in wait on the counter-attack. From one such move forward, Argentine skipper Matias Parades broke the deadlock when he converted Matias Rey's pass with a nicely taken backhand stroke.
The Dutch fought hard to get on the board before half-time, but Argentine goalie Juan Manuel Vivaldi and his defenders stood firm. The third quarter followed a similar trend, but the Oranje got level in the 47th minute when Mink van der Weerden rocketed home his fourth goal of the competition from a penalty corner.
And star striker Jeroen Hertzberger drew ahead with five minutes to go when he took in a right wing pass from Rogier Hofman, beat one man and fired home an inch-perfect reverse-stick shot for 2-1. The Dutch added one more immediately after when Argentina removed their goalkeeper to chase an equaliser with Constantijn Jonker popping into the empty net. The 28-year-old Hertzberger then added a penalty stroke at the death to complete the totally misleading scoreline.
"We didn't come all the way to India to come fifth so it is a big disappointment. The quarter-final loss to Pakistan still hurts. But once we lost that match, it was simple," Jonker said.
"We had to finish fifth and I am very glad we did that. We showed character and I am proud of how the team played in the last two matches. It did not come easy but we managed to pull through."Published 14 Dec 2014, 17:37 IST