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Argentina need to keep confidence going

I am really upset with the way Korea went down to New Zealand. Their loss is a big blow to Asian hockey as it virtually ends the possibility of a team from this continent making it to the last four, says Dhanraj Pillai.

india Updated: Mar 07, 2010 01:11 IST

I am really upset with the way Korea went down to New Zealand. Their loss is a big blow to Asian hockey as it virtually ends the possibility of a team from this continent making it to the last four.

They were listless in their moves and there was no urgency in the forward line, and that is not the Korean team that we know.

They simply did not have the ‘oomph’ to make it count.

Nothing should be taken away from the Kiwis though, as they had every answer to Korea’s raids, and defended the penalty corners in a fantastic way.

Veteran Kiwi player Archibald was in his elements, and the energy he displayed while assisting in attack and defence was simply amazing.

I hope the Kiwis continue with this confidence as they still have to play Argentina and Germany.

Canada too came up with a spirited effort against the Dutchmen and it is no mean feat that they managed to hold their fancied opponents goalless in the first half. But their resistance came to an end when in a short span of 15 minutes in the second half, a 5-goal blitz broke their spirit.

As usual the master, Taeke Taekema began the goal blitz, scoring from a penalty corner and releasing the pressure, after which the Dutch attacked in waves to swamp the

opposition.

Germany seemed to be in a hurry to score the early goal against Argentina, which they did in the 5th minute, but they must have surely not expected Argentina to hit back immediately. In fact, Argentina seemed to have got the measure of their more famed rivals and if anything made the difference, it was the strategy of the Germans who stuck to their plan till the end.

In the second half, Argentina were all over the German defence and equalised in the 55th minute. It could have been anybody's match till the final hooter, so strong was Argentina’s reply.

Like the Germany-Argentina game, the clash between Holland and Germany on Sunday should be a close affair. Both are multiple winners of this crown, and the victor of this match will top Pool A.

While the Dutch seem to hold the edge going into the match, it’s going to be a very fast-paced encounter.

For The Netherlands, the players to watch will be Taeke Taekema and Teun de Nooijer, who have been the masterminds of their campaign, while for Germany, the rock solid defence of Mueler and the skills of roving forward Martin Zwicker will be put to test.

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