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The Black Sticks men were beaten 4-3 by the Netherlands in their FIH Pro-League clash in Auckland yesterday.
After finding themselves behind by 3-0 after the first quarter, the Black Sticks fought their way back into the contest, and were 3-3 at half time.
The Netherlands secured the opening goal of the game when a lapse in defence gave the team a free deflection in the Black Sticks’ circle. The visiting side increased its lead when a powerful reverse shot by Jonas De Geus went past goalkeeper George Enersen, and went further ahead still late in the first quarter when a powerful drag-flick from Jip Janssen went into the back of the net. Hugo Inglis got the home side on to the scoreboard at the start of the second quarter when he evaded several defenders, and flicked it past the goalkeeper.
Inglis next received a fantastic cross from Kane Russell and flicked in his second goal. With 30 seconds to go in the quarter, Nick Ross drove confidently into the circle and earned the Black Sticks their first penalty corner of the match. Russell drag-flicked home the goal to tie the game at 3-3 and set up an exciting second half.
Brinkman ultimately settled the match in the third quarter when he powered home a reverse shot to put the Netherlands up 4-3.
The Black Sticks women went down 1-0 to the Netherlands in a tight contest, ultimately sealed with a great goal to Maartje Krekelaar in the 38th minute of the game.
Both sides had opportunities, the Netherlands having six clear shots to the Black Sticks’ five, showing just how close this match was.
Thierry Brinkman 9’ 44’, Jonas De Geus 12’, Jip Janssen 14’
Black Sticks men 3
Hugo Inglis 16’ 28’, Kane Russell 30’Halftime: 3-3.
Maartje Krekelaar 38’
Black Sticks women 0