In the FIH Hockey Men’s World Cup on Monday afternoon at the Birsa Munda Stadium in Rourkela, Malaysia defeated Chile 3-2. At the same location, the Netherlands defeated New Zealand 4-0 in another match. At the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, France defeated South Africa 2-1 later that evening.
The match between Australia and Argentina is scheduled to start shortly. Due to one loss and a lower goal difference, France now ranks third in their pool with three points, behind table-toppers Australia and Argentina. In contrast, South Africa has zero points and two losses in two games, placing them at the bottom of the points table.
France had better ball control at the beginning of the first quarter, but it didn’t translate into any circle penetrations. France won a penalty stroke in the seventh minute, and Victor Charlet converted it to give France a 1-0 lead less than ten minutes into the match.
Seven minutes later, South Africa won a penalty corner, and the fierce strike of captain Connor Beuchamp could not be stopped by the French goalkeeper. Even at the end of the first quarter, it was honors. In the 21st minute, France won a penalty corner, but Goyet couldn’t do much with it. As both sets of midfielders appeared content to supplement their defense, neither team penetrated the other team’s half.
The score was 1-1 at the end of the first half and second quarter. In an effort to win, both teams pressed for a goal in the third quarter. South Africa had chances, but it didn’t capitalize on them. In fact, in this quarter, both teams won penalty corners but were unable to convert them.
The score stood at 1-1 with 15 minutes remaining in the third quarter. South Africa appeared more eager and proactive in the final quarter. Every time they tried to break through the French defenses, they hit a wall. In the 56th minute, France won a penalty corner, and Charlet smashed the ball into the left bottom corner of the net to give his team the lead with four minutes left for the goal.
In the final moments, France maintained their advantage and won the game, albeit by a slim margin of 2-1. Charlet was named “Player of the Match” after scoring twice. ANI)
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