This website uses cookies. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept

L1 Suffer Shootout Agony In EHL FINAL8


7th April 2023

By Colin Pike

Surbiton Ladies suffered shootout heartbreak after losing 3-1 to German club Düsseldorfer HC after drawing 1-1 after 60 minutes in the EHL FINAL8 at the Wagener Stadium in Amsterdam on Friday.

Düsseldorfer had been involved in shootouts in both their matches in the 2022 edition of the Euro Hockey League and the run was destined to continue after Lisa Nolte equalised in the 48th minute from a penalty corner after Steph Elliott had put Surbiton ahead in the same manner in the 16th. 

Surbiton not only had to regroup after missing out on a ninth successive Vitality Women's Hockey League title on their own pitch last weekend, but had to adjust to playing four quarters of 15 minutes after playing 70 minutes matches in their domestic league.

Under grey skies and with the floodlights needed, Surbiton began the match in positive mode and forced a penalty corner after just two minutes. Giselle Ansley's shot went wide of the left post, but Düsseldorfer immediately counter attacked from the restart with Sara Strauss breaking away and Surbiton goalkeeper, Sabbie Heesh forced to make a save from Agustina Albertario as an early preview of what proved to be an end to end attacking game.

Surbiton suffered a setback in the fifth minute when they lost their right to video referral after Hannah Martin's goal was disallowed. Martin immediately referred but as the goal was scored after the umpire's whistle was blown for an earlier offence, the incident was defined as not referrable.

Martin forced a save from Nathalie Kubalski and Izzy Petter struck the right sideboard from an acute angle before the first quarter ended. 

Alice Sharp had been involved in the first penalty corner award and her hard work also led to Surbiton's second penalty corner which earned Surbiton their lead. Ansley's shot was saved by Kubalski only for Elliott to put away the rebound to open the scoring.

Trailing, Düsseldorfer put some pressure on the Surbiton goal with Lisa Nolte's shot being kicked away by Heesh, Leah Wilkinson blocking another shot and Strauss earning a 23 metre restart before Surbiton were able to get some breathing space.

Düsseldorfer had injury concerns during the match with Pia Lhotak being hit following an Ansley aerial ball and Strauss had to leave the field for a while after an accidental collision with her teammate Sophia Schwabe. 

In the third quarter, Heesh was on call again as Friederike Heusgen threatened to bring the German side level, but it was ultimately Nolte's drag-flick from her side's third penalty corner in the 48th minute which restored parity.

Nolte was also involved when Martha Le Huray was sent to the sin-bin for a foul on the German player, but Surbiton managed to cope with being a player down for five minutes and ensure the game was decided by a shootout.

Düsseldorfer went first with Lily Stoffelsma failing to score. Hamilton was denied by Kubalski and the scoreline was still scoreless after each team's first two attempts: Heesh saving from Elisa Grave and Darcy Bourne denied by Kubalski as the goalkeepers were very much on top.

A recovered Strauss slipped the ball inside Heesh's left post to open the scoring with Izzy Petter immediately levelling to make the score 1-1. Albertario also scored just inside Heesh's left post to restore Düsseldorfer's lead, before Elliott's shot was saved and the rebound ended high and past the left post after the eight seconds expired.

Nolte duly stepped up to win the shootout for the German champions and to leave Surbiton wondering what might have been.

Surbiton will face SCHC in the ranking match at 0815 BST on Sunday. 's-Hertogenbosch beat their Dutch rivals 3-2 in a shootout on Friday night after a 1-1 draw at the end of 60 minutes.

More information about the Euro Hockey League including any subsequent scheduling changes can be found at the EHF Altius website here

The Euro Hockey League round-up of Friday's matches can be read here

Hampstead & Westminster are also in European action in the EuroHockey Club Trophy in Wettingen, Switzerland. More information about their tournament can be found at the EHF Altius website here

Matches from both tournaments can be watched via EuroHockey TV here

Passes to watch the Euro Hockey League involving Surbiton cost €12.99 but the Trophy matches are free to view.