Field Hockey World Cup: New Zealand’s Red Bulls take on the unexpected shock of a place in the semi-finals

Field Hockey World Cup: New Zealand’s Red Bulls take on the unexpected shock of a place in the semi-finals

To advance to the last four of the World Cup, Belgium can also count on the advice of their successful former coach Shane MacLeod, who also captained New Zealand.

Belgium will take on New Zealand this Tuesday in Bhubaneswar, at 2:30pm. The Belgian, for a place in the Hockey World Cup Final Four. the Red LionsWorld champions, you will have to avoid the trap kiwi Who comes to them to continue to believe in the incredible crown of the second world.

After victories over Korea (5-0) and Japan (7-1), as well as a draw with Germany (2-2), the Belgians won Group B, avoiding a dangerous passage in the crossover. While everyone, including the Belgian camp, expected to take on the dangerous challenge of crossing the road to India in the sweltering court of Kalinga, the host country did not survive to the end’.black sticks’, the penalty shootout winners (3-3, 5-5 and so on) on Sunday night. whether, what if Michel van den Hovel You can depend on her Arthur Van Dorenwhose playing time during the group stage was modified due to back discomfort, should be different for him Alexander Hendricks. The best sleeper in the world, the Antwerp resident was beaten by the first Japanese player on Friday and is very uncertain. In the event of a permanent change within the Belgian Group, Maxim van Osta defender like Antwerp, it makes sense for him to enter the comp line.

The Belgians and New Zealanders have not faced each other in an official match since February 2020, due to the Covid pandemic and travel restrictions imposed on ‘black sticks“. the Red Lions It remained five matches unbeaten against Oceania. In the event of qualification, the Belgians will face on Friday (2:30 pm Belgian) the winner of the duel between the Netherlands and South Korea, falling to the general surprise of Argentina on Monday after a match rich in twists and turns (5-5, 3-2 thus).

Shane McLeod is back on the Belgian coaching staff for this World Cup. BELGA PHOTO LAURIE DIEFFEMBACQ

Shane MacLeod back on the Belgian staff: ‘It’s like coming home’

With her well-balanced voice and New Zealand accent, Shane MacLeod He talked about his return to the staff Red Lions After taking a year off on the heels of securing Olympic gold in Tokyo in the summer of 2021. The technician, who swapped roles with Michel van den Heeuvel, his assistant-turned-head coach, sang the praises of a group he considers his team. family.

“If I can come back, it’s more mainly for this vibrant environment than wanting to hunt for a new trophy. My return has never been complicated, it’s a bit like coming home.”Shane McLeod fired ahead of facing New Zealand in the World Cup quarter-finals, this Tuesday in Bhubaneswar. The return of the technician was also facilitated by the manner in which the staff of the team Red Lions. ” We’ve always worked in a very collegial way, even if some roles are now dramatically different. For me, the hardest part was finding my little place, but being with the players and the coaching staff again is really great fun. »

Now more focused on tactics and scouting other teams, this “which he particularly appreciates”Shane McLeod compared the group that became world champions at the end of 2018 with those who are chasing a new crown. “I think the current team is better thanks to the experience gained after the world, European and Olympic titles”confirmed. “We have gone from a team that hunts to a team that gets hunted. You have to be able to manage that aspect.”

While the start to the tournament was peppered with some hiccups, Shane MacLeod thinks things are changing. “Arthur van Doren has had problems but things are getting better and better. If you add the fact that we’re playing New Zealand and not India, plus a possible extra day of rest if we get to the semi-finals, these are small aspects in our favour. But beware, it doesn’t make things any easier.” .to caution.

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This Tuesday, at 2:30 p.m., Belgium, Belgium and New Zealand, countries dear to the heart of the man who epitomizes black-yellow-red hockey success, will vie for a place in the last four. the ‘black stickswho remained on five consecutive defeats against Red Lionshave not reached this stage of competition.

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