The Euro Hockey League will have a new champion this year as Oranje Zwart and Harvestehuder progressed to the final of the competition for the very first time, setting up their final showdown at 2.30pm on Monday in Eindhoven.
German side Harvestehuder were the first to take their place in the decider as they produced the comeback of the knock-out stages of the Euro Hockey League to defeat Racing Club de Bruxelles with a brilliant recovery from 2-0 down to win 3-2. The German club looked on their way out of the competition when Jonathan Becker’s pair of corner goals left them trailing at half time but, inspired by Tobias Hauke, they replied with gusto with Michael Korper eventually potting the winner with six minutes to go. It was a terrific game, played at high intensity throughout. In spite of Becker’s efforts, German sides are rarely beaten, no matter the circumstances. They got a glimmer of hope at the end of the third quarter when a corner was half-broken down but ultimately fell to Hauke who picked out the bottom corner with a low push. He subsequently picked out a sublime backhand pass to Xaver Hasun on the right of the circle and he arrowed in a thunderous drive to the bottom corner. And Korper won it with six minutes left, eventually flipping home from close range amid a melee in front of Jeremy Gucasoff. Please read the full match report here.
In the second Final 4 tie, Oranje Zwart’s composed, controlled performance put them through to their first Euro Hockey League final, seeing off last year’s runners-up Dragons 3-0 in front of a loud home crowd. They never looked troubled from the moment they went ahead late in the first half with Jelle Galema opening the scoring before Mink van der Weerden and Gabriel Dabanch extended the lead to three in the third quarter. Galema finished off from Rob Reckers who held his balance superbly at the right baseline before bouncing the ball across goal where the Dutch international was waiting to finish off. Van der Weerden applied the second with a powerful shot that Leroy and his post-man could do nothing about. Dabanch duly closed out the match with a spectacular reverse-stick finish from the left of the circle to make it 3-0. For Dragons, they now battle it out for third and fourth place with country rivals Racing Club de Bruxelles. Please read the full match report here.
More information about all the games including full reports and video highlights of all the matches can be found at www.ehlhockey.tv, the official website of the Euro Hockey League.
Finals – Match Schedule Monday April 21st 2014
Finals 3 / 4 place
12.00 Racing Club de Bruxelles v KHC Dragons
14.30 Harvestestuder THC v MHC Oranje Zwart
Source: EHL Media Release
Photograph: EHL/Frank Uijlenbroek (c)