England : Payne; Wallace, Gall, Albery, Roper, Rushmere, Creed, Ansell, Bandurak, Calnan, Nurse; then Goodfield, Smith, Condon, Ward, Sloan, Griffiths
Belgium : Van Doren; Hendrickx, Boccard, De Sloover, Stockbroekx; Wegnez, Gougnard, Denayer; de Kerpel, van Aubel, Charlier; Then Dohmen, Dockier, Boon, Van Oost, Cosyns, Poncelet
Referees : MM. C. Van Bunge and P. Walker
Green cards : 20th Cosyns, 29th Sloan, 40th De Kerpel
yellow card : 60th Gougnard
The goals : 22nd Calnan (1-0), 32nd Calnan (2-0), 33rd De Sloover (2-1), 60th Hendrickx on pc (2-2)
shoot out : Boccard (0-0), Roper (1-0), De Sloover (1-0), Albery (2-0), Wegnez (2-0), Ansell (3-0)
Penalty corner : England (0/0) and Belgium (1/6) The Red Lions had joined London to play two Pro League matches this weekend. Vincent Vanasch was left on the bench. Van Oost was the only young Red.
The start of the first match was quite timid. The two nations observed each other. Stocks were non-existent. We had to wait until the 13th minute to experience a first thrill: a pc for the English. Bandurak was looking for the skylight, but Van Doren was pushing away. With 18 seconds remaining in the first quarter, a back pass in the circle forced Wegnez into a risky defensive move. Mr. van Bunge showed the point of stroke, but the video canceled it. Wegnez touched the ball first. Rushmere entered the circle in the 22nd minute. Calnan cocked a big shot into the top corner. The Belgians finally reacted on an acceleration from Gougnard which brought the first pc in the 24th minute. Re pc. Boon was looking for the right side, but Payne was turning away. On a cross from Gougnard, van Aubel put his stick and framed, but Payne was solid. A move from van Aubel was dangerous in the 30th minute. On a cross shot from Boon, De Kerpel deviated just in front of Payne who still had the necessary reflex. De Kerpel wanted a pc, but the video did not allow him.
The second half resumed with a stick on the temple of Nico De Kerpel. In the aftermath, Calnan again crucified Van Doren in the 33rd minute (0-2). The Belgians were finally smiling again. De Sloover was toying with Charlier before receiving the ball again. In a very small angle, De Sloover deceived the excellent Payne (2-1). Boon did not fit his deflection in the 41st minute. It lacked precision in the sequences for the Reds to be dangerous.
The Belgians did not raise their level at the start of the last quarter. They were clueless. Ansell deflected a cross on the head of Mr Walker who did not flinch. Dohmen was going to get a third pc. Boon’s sleep was countered by the first standout. Seven minutes from time, De Kerpel aimed his shot. He started the end of the game in favor of the Red Lions. The English closed the door tightly. Wegnez quickly played a foul in the 25 and rushed on the opponent who was not five meters away. The pc was right. Hendrickx could not find the flaw in his two sleeps. The Belgians resigned themselves to attempting shots from afar. The English defensive block is too compact. Or the Belgians who are too uninspired. Florent van Aubel was still going for a 6th pc in the 59th minute. Hendrickx slammed the ball into the goal just 60 seconds from time.
Loic Van Doren received a second series of shoot outs. He didn’t stop a single one as all three Reds missed the target. De Sloover put the ball on the post.
On Sunday, the two teams will meet for the rematch.