Hockey – Reassuring German Teams

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The German hockey teams got off to a great start in the tournament. The women battled Rio Olympic champions Great Britain 2:1 (1:1) on Sunday. Already on Saturday the men had clearly beaten the Canadian outsiders at 7:1 (4:1). Charlotte Stappenhorst scored the winning goal in the 33rd minute. “But it was incredibly exhausting,” said the woman from Hamburg. “I’ve been playing internationally for a long time – I’ve never seen such heat on the pitch.”

The Olympic third from Rio had to be fought with great trepidation in the opening stage at the OE Stadium, so that the British women qualifiedly took the lead through Sarah Jones (13th / Strafeke). “You can still feel the excitement in many people,” said Stappenhorst. The turning point came only with Victoria Hughes equalizing the odd seven-metre goal (25th). Although the Hamburg woman slipped, she had the advantage when world goalkeeper Maddie Hinch jumped into the wrong corner. Coach Javier Reckinger said, “It’s great how the girls changed the game and then brought it home.” As announced, Captain Nike Lorenz wore an iridescent band on the left sock as a symbol of sexual diversity. The next opponent is India on Monday (2.15 pm/CEST), losing 5-1 to top favorite Netherlands.

The German men will play their second match on Monday (2.30am/CEST) against world champions Belgium. There, national coach Kais Al Saadi is calling for an increase in performance despite the victory over Canada. Hamburger praised and complained, “We’ve already done a lot of good things, but we haven’t been able to do it consistently for long because we made too many mistakes.” The goals against Canada were scored by Lukas Windfeder, Christopher Ruhr (both 2), Martin Hainer, Niklas Boserhoff and Mats Grambusch. Thanks to goal difference, Germany leads Group B, but Belgium quickly curtailed their gold ambitions with a 3–1 victory over European champions the Netherlands.

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