Jonker’s hat-trick hands Dutch HWL Final title
New Delhi: Constantijn Jonker slammed a hat-trick to help the Netherlands spank New Zealand 7-2 in a lop-sided summit clash and lift the inaugural Hero Hockey World League Final title here on Saturday.
A cagey first 10 minutes saw both teams testing each other, but providing few real scoring opportunities at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium.
It was the Netherlands who broke the deadlock when Jonker (17th) hit the ball from a seemingly impossible angle past an outstretched Devon Manchester in the Black Sticks goal.
The Netherlands put pressure on New Zealand defence in the last 15 minutes of the first half by winning two penalty corners. They doubled their lead in the 23rd minute through Billy Bakker’s field goal as New Zealand struggled to cope with the ferocity of the Dutch attack.
The Netherlands made the scoreline 3-0 just at the stroke of half time when Jonkers (35th) deflected a hit from the midfield into New Zealand goal.
The second half got off to a scintillating start as the Netherlands extended their lead through Bob de Voogd (36th).
But Steve Edwards (37th) pulled one back for New Zealand with a field strike to make the scoreline 4-1.
The game continued to be open with both teams using long passes to penetrate opposition defence, but again it was the Netherlands who found the back of the net through Rogier Hofman’s (45th) field goal to take the match beyond New Zealand’s reach.
Edwards (52nd) scored his second goal for the Black Sticks with another field effort before Bakker (59th) restored the Netherlands’ lead with yet another field goal.
Minutes later, Jonker (61st) got his hat-trick after running onto a ball fired into the circle and tapping it home to give the Netherlands their maiden HWL Final crown.
Earlier in the day, England won the bronze medal after stunning world champions Australia 2-1 in a hard-fought third-fourth place match.