England Men lost 1-0 to the Netherlands in the losing quarter-finalists match designated as the 7th/ 8th place playoff in the Odisha Hockey World League Final tournament in Bhubaneswar on Friday.
Both teams had to work hard to compete in heavy rain with spray coming up from the pitch.
Not surprisingly the first quarter was goalless with the first half restricted to a total of three shots: 2 for England and 1 for the Netherlands with Surbiton’s Harry Gibson making an excellent glove save from Valentin Verga five minutes before the interval.
The Dutch went close in the 37th minute, Robbert Kemperman claiming that he had touched a ball on its way into the goal, but his claims were waved away by the umpires.
The only goal came in the 42nd minute, Verga pulling the ball back from the byline for Mirco Pruijser to get a deft touch and angle the ball just inside the left post.
England had two penalty corner opportunities, the second award resulting in the Netherlands losing their video referral but Mark Gleghorne’s shot was saved by Sam van der Ven.
Liam Sanford came on as a kicking back with just under six minutes to play, but the Netherlands earned their first win in the tournament to claim seventh place.
Surbiton’s Luke Taylor, Brendan Creed and James Gall were all in the England starting line-up with Harry Gibson in goal for the second and fourth quarters and David Goodfield coming on as a sixth minute substitute.
More information about the tournament can be found on the Event Page on the FIH website here
The England Hockey match report, including recognition of George Pinner’s 100th game for England can be found here