The Netherlands Men’s Hockey team steamroll South Africa in their third Pro League Match

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Dragflick Newsdesk : The Netherlands men’s team gave masterclasses in their particular style of hockey in the first of a series of FIH Hockey Pro League matches taking place in Potchefstroom, South Africa. The Dutch were the epitome of elegant, clinical and relentless hockey as they contained and then overwhelmed the ambitions of South Africa.

The Netherlands took advantage of a nervous start by South Africa to take the lead in the seventh minute when Tim Swaen slotted a penalty stroke past Siyavuya Nolutshungu.

South Africa rallied and the lightening speed of Dayaan Cassiem, Jethro Eustice and Nqobile Ntuli created all sorts of problems for the Dutch. The energy of the forward line paid off when Ntuli scored to bring the scores level.

If the first quarter was shared, then the second quarter was all about the Netherlands. Three goals – from captain Thierry Brinkman, Derck de Vilder and Player of the Match Thijs van Dam – put the game beyond South Africa’s reach.

A quieter third quarter saw just one goal – albeit in the 15th second after the restart – scored by Jorrit Croon. But a blistering and relentless final quarter saw six goals, including a beautifully shot hit on the run by Tijmen Reyenga, plus goals for Swaen, Brinkman, Koen Bijen and two for Jip Janssen.

Player of the Match Thijs van Dam (NED) said:

‘We played a really great match. We have been here 10 days already and we have trained hard and finally we can play some matches.’

This results puts Netherlands at the top of the table, one point ahead of Belgium. India, with one win from one match sit in fourth place.

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