Round-Up: FIH Pro League continues to entertain

Great Britain
The exciting new FIH Pro League tournament returned this weekend and once again there was plenty of high quality hockey on show.

The action started with a double victory for Germany away at New Zealand on Friday, with both sides coming out 3-1 winners to secure their first wins of the tournament. Amy Robinson had given New Zealand’s women the perfect start by scoring in the first minute but Charlotte Stapenhorst, Pia Maertens and Hannah Gablac hit back for Die Danas. Meanwhile a double from Marco Milktau was crucial in securing victory for Germany’s men.

Those results mean New Zealand’s men have now lost three of their four games - drawing the other - whilst the women have six points from five games. So far, the German teams have only played twice each, the women recording a win and a draw, whilst the men have a win and a loss.

Friday’s final game saw Spain’s men produce a remarkable comeback from three goals behind to beat The Netherlands on a shootout after the game finished 3-3. Having come back from 5-2 down to draw with Australia earlier in the competition, this time it was The Netherlands who would blow such a lead after looking well on top for the first 40 minutes. However, a late surge from Spain drew them level before earning the bonus point over the Dutch with their second shootout victory in the league. The result saw The Netherlands move level with Great Britain on six points – with only Belgium ahead of both – while Spain took their overall tally to four points.

Great Britain had the chance to move back above the Dutch in their double header against Australia on Saturday but went down 2-0 to the hosts in a tight game. This was then followed by another even contest between the women’s teams, with the Hockeyroos eventually coming out 3-0 winners after proving more clinical in attack. They now have 11 points from five games, whilst the Kookaburras have seven points from four games and sit fourth in the table. 

The Netherlands’ women were next in action on Saturday as they thrashed hosts USA 5-0 for their second victory of the tournament, while it was a first loss for the Americans after drawing with Argentina in their opener two weeks before.

In the final match of the weekend, New Zealand’s women bounced back from their loss to Germany with a 2-0 win over China. The victory was the Black Sticks’ second in five games, while China are yet to pick up a point in the FIH Pro League after two fixtures.

The FIH Pro League comes to London on April 27 when Great Britain’s women, the reigning Olympic Champions, face The USA at the Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre. Tickets are currently available for the clash by clicking here.