Germany Beat Spain, Win Tourney
April 17, 2006
Germany 1 Spain 0
In front of 4,700 spectators, Germany won the decisive game at the 4 nations tournament in Mönchen-gladbach versus European champion Spain 1-0.
Moritz Fürste scored the decisive goal for a German victory. Björn Emmerling got the award as the best individual player of the tournament. The best goalie was Juan Manuel Vivaldi.
The first action in the game belonged to the German keeper Christian Schulte who was playing instead of Ulrich Bubolz. He had to hurriedly block a shot from a Spanish striker.
Germany were the next into attack when Matthias Witthaus started a fast attack from the left and passed on to Carlos Nevado on the touch line. Then a fast ball to Moritz Fürste was sent into the right corner for Germany to lead 1-0 in the 3rd minute.
Spain came back strongly and was dominant but couldn't breach the German defence.
After 17 minutes the brilliant Björn Emmerling started the next good move for the Germans. Moritz Fürste gained the first penalty corner for the Germans. But Rodrigo Garca safely kept out Christoper Zellers flick.
The Germans had lesser but the better of the opportunities: Matthias Witthaus missed, unmarked in the circle and minutes later a pass just missed him as he stood in front of the goal.
A big mistake of Jan Marco Montag led the way for Eduard Tubau to shoot but Timo Wess blocked in the last second.
After the break, in the 31st minute, Cortez saved a stick deflection of Matthias Witthaus. Minutes later, he again stopped stopped a backhand shot from Eduard Tubau on the line. But due to dangerous play when hitting the ball out of the circle, Spain got their first penalty corner which was saved by Christopher Zeller.
Schulte saved twice against Eduard Arbos and Pol Amat in the 38th and 41st minute.
Both teams now had more space and therefore created chances on both end of the field. A mistake by Christoph Menke gave the second penalty corner to Spain but Jan Marco Montag was at the right spot to clear the ball. In the 50th minute it was again Schulte who was far enough on the outside to push the ball out. Spain now had more ball possessions. But the strong German defence kept them away. In the 60th minute Schulte again showed his skills when saving a penalty corner on one on one situation against Ramon Allegre. Afterwards there were two more chances for the German team when Witthaus deflection went far and Scharowsky hit the ball onto the pads of goalie Cortez. The last chance for spain was in the 66th minute when Eduard Tubau hit a reverse shot five meters above the goal.
India Beat Argentina 3-2
April 17, 2006
India 3 Argentina 2
Asia Cup Champions India, finally, played and improved their game to beat South American Champions Argentina 3-2 to finish third in the four-nation tournament.
A strong first half was enough to ensure victory for India and a third place for a team that is still trying to come together with a change in coaching staff after the Commonwealth Games.
Argentina waited just behind the midfield for attacks on India. Argentina was the first to get a penalty corner which Bharat Chettri cleared easily.
Minutes later the Indians gained their first corner and specialist Sandeep Singh´s flick beat the Argentina defence to give India a 1-0 lead in the 10th minute.
Then it was the turn of Tushar Khandekar to make his way alone over the left side and pass the ball precisely to Rajpal Singh who blasted the ball into the Argentinian goal in the 18th minute.
Seven minutes later Rajpal Singh scored again and this time it was Prabodh Tirkey who gave the ball from the right flank. Although the Argentinians claimed a high ball, umpire Rafa Ruiz gave India their third goal in the 26th minute.
It was only in the closing minutes that the match got more exciting. The Argentinians scored twice within a few minutes - First Ezequiel Paulon picked up a rebound and shot it in the net in the 60th minute.
Then Tomas Mc Cormick scored with a penalty corner in the 66th minute. Argentina could have gained a draw in the dying minutes, but Retegui missed the goal by centimetres.
India Fight Back But Spain Dominant
Four Nation Hockey Tournament
April 16, 2006
Spain 5 India 3
European champion Spain won the second match at the four Nations tournament in Moenchengladbach. The Spanish team beat the Indians 5-3. At the brea, the European Champions led 2-0. The winner of the tournament will be decided after the Spain-Germany match.
Rajpal Singh had the first shot at goal but hit the post. Spain answered immediately with more pressure and played with quick passes. From a furious attack over the left side the Spanish gained their first goal - Eduard Tubau brought the ball past the Indian defence and passed on to Pol Amat, who flicked into goal in the 9th minute. Minutes later Pau Quemada hit a penalty corners against the crossbar. The Europeans were dominant in the following minutes and the Indians hardly had goal chances. It was goalgetter Amat who scored again after 21 minutes. After a penalty corner he smashed the ball into the net. Taking a lead of 2-0, Spain slowed the pace of the game.
The European champions started powerfully and increased the lead with the first chance they got. Amat passed brilliantly to Tubau who converted with the backhand in the 37th minute. India cut the deficit with a Tushar Khandekar goal which was a brilliant solo effort in the 44th minute.
It was a wake up call for the Indians as they applied more pressure. Indian skipper raised his game and in the 55th minute, he scored with a powerful shot from a wide angle.
Gagan then gained a penalty corner which Sandeep Singh converted and suddenly the match came alive with scores of 3-3.
But Spain used the space in the Indian defence and Tubau scored off a pass from Amat in the 63rd minute. Six minutes later it was again Tubau who scored Spain's fifth in the 69th minute.
Spain Beat Argentina 1-0
In the opening game of the Four-Nations-Tournement at the Warsteiner Hockey Park, the European champions Spain defeated South-American champion Argentina 1-0. Spain squeezed out a victory after a penalty conversion from Ramon Alegre in the 43rd minute. In the first half, both the teams were locked goalless. The best players on the pitch were the two keepers Francisco Cortes (Spain) and Juan Vivaldi, who avoided more goals with some great saves.
Both teams began the game very cautiously and played out of a safe defence. The South Americans achieved their first penalty corner after five minutes but keeper Francisco Cortes easily averted Vilas´ flick. The next two chances were also those of the "Gauchos". First a shot of Matias Paredes was blocked in the nick of time and later captain Orozco, unmarked in the circle, couldn´t shoot the ball properly. As a result the Spanish got more and more proactive and had heaps of chances. First Xavier Ribas and Rodrigo Garza and then Pol Amat wasted sharp chances. Two more penalty corners from Ribas and Amat were wasted.
In the 42nd minute, Ramon Alegre was successful in pushing in a penalty corner after the ball had gone through three variations.
Argentina reacted and got two penalty corners which were saved by goalkeeper Cortes. In the last 15 minutes the Spanish defence stood up as the European champions walked away with a 1-0 win.
Germany Beat India 4-1
Even though both the teams didn't have their main players, World Champions Germany still managed to hold sway, cut their errors and put it across India 4-1. At the break, both the teams were locked 1-1.
Matchwinner of this game in the Warsteiner HockeyPark was Christopher Zeller, Germany´s player of the year 2005. He managed to score thrice and take Germany to a creditable victory. Germany takes over at the head of the table after the first day.
Just before kick-off a minute´s silence for the honoury president of the European hockey federation, the French Alain Danet, was held. The Indians had the better start. In the third minute Moritz Fürste had to save the ball on the line for Ulrich Bubolz. It was also Fürste who helped the German team to their first big chance in the ninth minute. Björn Emmerling gained the first penalty corner for the German team. But Christopher Zeller failed to bring the ball past the Indian defence. It became a quick game but with a lot of errors in front of the Indian circle. In the 21nd minute Matthias Witthaus had the first great chance for Germany. But the Indian goalkeeper Chetri managed to make a great save and the German team gained another penalty corner. The following flick from Jan-Marco Montag was held by Bharat Chetri and Zeller hit the rebound from a short distance over the goal. Nicolas Emmerling had the next chance. He passed the ball from the backline to Christopher Zeller, who was standing alone in front of the goal. He locked the ball directly into the goal in the 23rd minute (1-0).
With their second dangerous move inside the German circle the Indian team managed to equalise in the 29th minute. The scorer was Tushar Khandekar, one of the three newcomers in the team of the new Indian coach Vasudevan Bhaskaran.
The second half began furiously for the Germans. Moritz Fürste gained the third penalty corner and Christopher Zeller flicked the ball directly into the right angle for a 2-1 lead in the 37th minute. In the 44th minute a free hit of Björn Emmerling to Sebastian Draguhn was deflected into the net (3-1). The German team gained two consecutive penalty corners but were not able to convert them. Rajpal Singh managed a backhand stroke in the German circle but hit the ball over the goal. In the 54th minute Christopher Zeller missed the goal by centimetres but just before the hooter sounded he could consolidate the German lead with his hattrick to the final 4-1 result.
Four-Nation Begins Today
World Hockey will have a look at Germany's new spanking World Cup stadium - the Warsteiner Hockey Park - when it opens with a Four Nation Tournament on Saturday.
The competition will have top class international participation and it also is the final test for the men's BDO Hockey World Cup 2006, which will take place at the same venue in Mönchen-gladbach five months later. Apart from Germany the participating teams are the continental champions Argentina, India and Spain. From 15 - 17 April 2006 hockey fans can experience world class sport and an attractive supporting programme in the world’s most modern hockey stadium.
Due to their success in the continental Championships, the three visiting teams Argentina, India and Spain are already qualified for the BDO Hockey World Cup in September. The teams will use this opportunity to have a look at the World Cup venue. Though, India and Argentina had announced that they will bring all their star players to Mönchengladbach, India, will be without players like striker Deepak Thakur, midfielder Viren Rasquinha, defender Kanwalpreet Singh and captain at the Commonwealth Games Ignace Tirkey.
Due to a parallel engagement, some German players won’t be able to participate. Tibor Weißenborn (Bloemendaal), Oliver Markowsky (Club de Campo Madrid) and the players from "Der Club an der Alster” are participating in the Eurohockey Cup Winners Cup 2006 in Reading (ENG).
For the same reason Spain's coach Mauritz Hendriks will have to do without his players from Madrid.