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2018 World Cup News
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Big day for Belgium (12/17/2018)
--s2h Team
The moment of triumph has come for the Rio Olympic silver medallist Belgium. It has not come a day late. The rising sun blighted the blistering attack of neighbouring giant The Netherlands in the entire sixty minutes in the Odisha World Cup final, and then went on to keep the nerves cool in the shoot out and sudden death to lift the field hockey's most coveted title here in Bhubaneswar.

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Belgium had one heartbreak at big stage when Argentina walked away with 4-2 victory at Rio two summers ago. On the other hand, the Netherlands had many running over many decades. Even as late as last World Cup, they lost the final despite taking 1-0 lead. There were no goals on Sunday against the ever-packed crowd.

However, it was their neighours who had better of exchanges and even three penalty corners, against nil by Belgium. It seemed the idea was to take them to shoot out. Netherlands over came Australia in the shoot out to be in the final. In fact, Netherlands' tryst with 2-0 continued in the nerve wrecking shoot out. undefined

The Netherlands had lost 2-0 lead in the semis before Australia bouncing back to 2-2 to force shoot out. Similarly, with goals from Joroen Hertzberger and Geus De Jonas, Netherland worked for a 2-0 lead but when Florent an Aubel and Victor Wegnez scored in trot, Seve van Ass and Thijs van Dam missed out. Then This van Dam had the title on hand but Vincent Vanasch, blocked Thijs van Dam's effort.

It lead to sudden death. Florent van Aubel struck. Now its turn for Hertznerger to score and bring parity, which did not happen. Vanasch brought the much famed 'sarvnash' to the Dutch. undefined

Even as the Belgium players rushed to lift Vanasch, and stadium erupted in joy, the deadly video referral was brought in a self-referral mode. Moments of suspense later, Belgium was allowed to inundate with their own tears of joy.

In a fight where the neighbours fought for honours, traditional superpower had to bend before a rising sun that torched their towering might.

Welcome Belgium, the sixth nation after Pakistan, India, Netherlands, Germany and Australia to lift the World Cup.

AWARDS
Odisha Best Player: Arthur Van Doren (BEL)
Odisha Mining Corporation Best Goalkeeper: Pirmin Blaak (NED)
Hockey India Best Junior Player: Thijs van Dam (NED)
Hero Top Scorer: Blake Govers (AUS) & Alexander Hendrickx (BEL) – 7 goals
Odisha Fair Play Award: Spain
Hockey India Fans Choice: Arthur Van Doren (BEL)
Hockey India Maximum Team Goals: Australia
Hockey India Best Team Goal Celebration: India

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FINAL RANKING
1: Belgium
2: Netherlands
3: Australia
4: England
5: Germany 6: India
7: Argentina
8: France
9: New Zealand
10: China
11: Canada
12: Pakistan
13: Spain
14: Ireland
15: Malaysia
16: South Africa

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