Pakistan lost their group match against Netherlands 3-1 and the semi-fial 5-1. - Photo by AFP
Pakistan lost their group match against Netherlands 3-1 and the semi-fial 5-2. - Photo by AFP

Pakistan's improved run at the FIH Champions Trophy 2012 came to an embarrassing end on Saturday, when they were thrashed 5-2 by the Netherlands in the first semi-final in Melbourne.

Pakistan went behind in the second minute when Billy Bakker scored from open play and the Dutch maintained the pressure for the rest of the match to book a spot in tomorrow's final.

The Greenshirts earned a penalty corner in the 10th minute but failed to convert after choosing for an indirect attack. The persistent Dutch attack paid off in the 20th minute, when Seve Van Ass doubled the lead soon after his team forced an impressive save from Pakistan's goalkeeper Imran Butt.

Pakistan's first goal came in the 23rd minute when a scintillating pass into the circle towards Shakeel Abbasi was put in by a Dutch defender. However, Bakker scored a brilliant goal in the 33rd minute to help his side maintain the two-goal cushion at half-time.

When play resumed, Pakistan made several moves into the Dutch half but failed to convert from a number of good chances while the Dutch applied pressure of their own by testing the Pakistan defence at the other end.

The Greenshirts were left to rue their missed chances when Valetnin Verga's powerful shot from just inside the circle consolidated the lead for Netherlands and put them within touching distance of their third consecutive final at the Champions Trophy.

With eight minutes left, the Netherlands scooped in their fifth and final goal of the match, with Pakistan's defence lacking any strength to plug the gaps.

Pakistan's leading goal-scorer of the tournament, Shakeel Abbasi, scored his first direct goal of the match in the dying seconds to give some consolation to the small but vociferous Pakistani contingent in the stands.

While they lost a chance to go for gold, Pakistan can still end up on the medals table should they win their third position match against subcontinent rivals India who were beaten 3-0 by Australia in the second semi-final.


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Comments (11)

himidik
December 8, 2012 2:04 pm
ALL OVER FOR TROPHY - PAKISTAN BETTER WIN THIRD PLACE INSTEAD RETURNING EMPTY HANDED.
Asif Ali Khan. Toronto. Canada
December 8, 2012 2:47 pm
Win or lose is part of the game. I am happy to see the over all improvement in the game of Pakistan eleven. I am hopefull the hockey team will do much better in future Insh'Allah.
Assad
December 8, 2012 1:46 pm
The reason Pakistan got thrashed by Holland is because we got by the Germans on pure luck. That win put false confidence in the team when the reality is that Pakistani team is no longer equal to the Western teams in terms of its fitness and ability to maintain the standard of the game at the level its being played at now. We are still stuck in our ways of playing Hockey "Asian" style when speed, strength and fitness are everything now. The Pakistan team needs to go back to the basics of how the new field hockey is being played which is that we need to have Hockey training academies which not only focus on stick skills, but also nutrition, physical conditioning and endurance of up and coming players. While its heartening that Pakistan still make it to the top to play with the leading teams, the results of the past 10 years are a clear indication that we are no longer able to compete with them well. Thus the massively one sided thrashing at their hands has become a common occurrence.
TruthBeTold
December 8, 2012 5:08 pm
I watched this match live and the game was closer than the final score makes appear. There were plenty of Chances in an end to end game that really brought back appreciation for the game of Hockey. A team that once again doesn't get the coverage, respect, funding, or facilities to be Elite still took down Gold Medal winning Germany and are off to try and win a Medal. I am tired of the defeatist Pakistani "Fans" that can not Cheer the team when they perform or support them to help them continue to perform. You trash your talent when they're down and do nothing to help them get back up. DESPITE such a poor following and support from home the boys still go out and perform. There was no Humiliation in losing to one of the best teams in International Hockey, they were the better team. There's also no shame in losing the Bronze Medal game if that happens. When india couldn't compete they pulled out of the Trophy for YEARS, Pakistan has been right there on the cusp look no further back than 2004. Pakistan has worked its way back to being relevance in Hockey with a top finish & regardless of what you so called Pakistani "Fans" think your team actually put up a fight. Look at the Goals Against, not counting the Semi Final Defeat. They played hard even in a match they were losing, they didn't stop fighting. Oh and GOOD GOD people they lost in the SEMI FINALS - most of you didn't even talk about them playing in the Trophy before they made it to the Semis. and Dawn? no coverage of any of Pakistan's sports teams rather than when they lose. No back stories, no thrilling inside stories from the team, nothing to PROMOTE them or the players. This is what's wrong with Pakistan - it's own people are too blind to care Pakistan or it's teams aren't the problem its you sad pathetic excuses for FANS that are the reason.
imran yusufzai
December 8, 2012 4:12 am
still well played pakistan, play your heart out, greater success will eventually come.
Tam
December 8, 2012 5:13 am
It nicely sets up the historic Pak vs India 3rd place play off!
Suresh Singh
December 8, 2012 5:19 am
This is unfortunate. Classical Asian hockey continue to loose its charm. There is difference between "play to enjoy" and "play to win". Though it is true that even the former ends up with a desire to win, but in between this desire to enjoy and win at individual level, players miss a number of things could make his team win: And that is what makes a team to huddle and to work as a team that make win possible.. This is probably the difference between Asian style of Hockey, and the European. European teams' focus remains on "win" and then role of players are allocated based on their capacity to contribute in this win. In case of Asian Hockey (India/Pakistan), the case is opposite: The concept of win flows from the concept of individual contribution.
Anwar Qureshi
December 8, 2012 8:59 am
Because everyone from top to bottom are minting money, so everyone is taking their chance to make money. Come back home with Bronze if possible, or don't worry nobody will question. You will continue to get your contractual salaries.
Ali Vaqar Awan
December 8, 2012 6:12 am
Its sad to see Pakistan getting thrashed by Netherland. Any how win and loss are the part of the game. Pakistan should have put up the better show. It seemed oppositie. The reason for defeat was wasting lots of chance to score field goals and scoring goals on penelty corners. More over ability to keep possesion was also the reason contributing to defeat. Salman Akbar and Rehan Butt should have been played along with Sohail Abbass, and this would have made great difference. As our federation has been unable to found suitable replacment for these experienced. It was fatal mistake to replace them. Honestly speaking our hockey federation needs to be overhauled and have those people that have understanding about hockey and willing to contribute. Netherland never gets boged down regardless who they are playing with. They plays have proper plan and purpose. Reaching Semi-final itself was big achievement. Pakistan should get focused and play thier best hockey for bronze medal match.
Abdullah Hussain
December 8, 2012 5:21 am
Come back home boys, you have troubled yourself enough. I don't understand why Qasim Zia is sticking to his chair?
haseeb
December 9, 2012 7:44 pm
i totally agree....we never give coverage or support to our own boys/girls. rather our media insists upon unnecessary stories about foreign players/actors/actresses who probably not even majority of our people know about. despite little support they are coming back and hopefully will be at the same level they used to be before.
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