Irish both succumb to four-star Dutch hosts

Volvo European Championships, day one round-up
U-18 Boys: Netherlands 4 (Milan van Baal, Roderic Schwirtz, Dennis Warmerdam, Hajo Meyer) Ireland 1 (Ian Sloan)

Ireland’s U-18 boys put in a powerful first half performance but were undone by their Dutch hosts in their opening Volvo European Championship tie in Utrecht, falling 4-1 on Tuesday evening.

As such they are playing catch-up in the group and have a vital tie against Russia this afternoon to try and get back into the mix for a semi-final place. The Russians fell 6-3 to Germany today while the game has an extra dimension. Should Ireland drop into the relegation pool, at this early stage, this looks likely to be the result which would carry over.

The Dutch started in nervy fashion as the Irish showed little stage fright, hitting the bar and dominating play.
It came as some surprise, then, when Milan Baal opened the scoring after 20 minutes following up Hajo Meyer’s cracked shot in the 22nd minute. But the Irish continued piling forward, winning a half-dozen corners in the first period and Ian Sloan made one stick three minutes later for 1-1.

Netherland, though, tore into the second half and were back in front through Roderic Schwirtz and showed a more composed edge to assuage Ireland’s threat.

They won a couple of corners and got a liberating the third goal through Pinoke striker Dennis Warmerdam who hit a thunderous shot in off the stanchion. Meyer added an excellent fourth on the final hooter following Tom Hiebendaal’s fine work to add an unflattering gloss to the scoreline.

Ireland boys: M Ingram, T Samuel, P Ritchie, J Duncan, A Fallis, N Gilmore, M Rollins, H Spain, I Sloan, D Cole, O Magee
Subs: M Bell, P Brown, R Canning, K Shimmins, J Wright

Volvo Boys European Championships, Group B results: Netherlands 4 (Milan van Baal, Roderic Schwirtz, Dennis Warmerdam, Hajo Meyer) Ireland 1 (Ian Sloan); Germany 6 Russia 3
Standings: 1. Germany 3pts (+3) 2. Netherlands 3pts 3. Russia 0pts (-3) 4. Ireland 0pts (-3)
Fixtures (all Irish time), Wednesday: Ireland vs Russia, 5pm; Thursday: Ireland vs Germany, 3pm

Group A: Belgium 2 Spain 1; England 1 France 1
Standings: 1. Belgium 3pts (+1) 2= England 1pt (0) 2= France 1pt (0) 4. Spain 0pts (-1)

U-18 girls: Netherlands 4 (Frederique Derkx, Marloes Keetels, Liselotte van Mens, Sian Keil) Ireland 0; Belgium 3 Scotland 0
A stunning first half performance from the Dutch meant they swept to the points from their tie with the Irish U-18 girls who defended well in the second half but the tie was always beyond reach after a 4-0 half-time scoreline.

It was a tough start for the Irish. Prior to the game, they continued their tradition of singing Ireland’s call a cappella with gusto but it was the Dutch who subsequently did their singing on the pitch.

The Irish did earn their only corner of the first half but goalie Anne Veenendaal was untroubled in clearing the danger. in the 16th minute, Sian Keil was alert to pounce on loose ball and looked well placed only for a superb Amy Cooke intervention.

A corner was given in the aftermath and though the shot was slightly mishit by Frederique Derkx but the ball disappeared into the right corner of the backboard. Less than a minute later, captain Marloes Keetels made it 2-0.

Although the Irish girls fought for every ball, the oranje kept piling forward, resulting in goals from Liselotte van Mens and Sian Keil before the break.

In the second half, the Irish defense was under more pressure but the Dutch girls could not take advantage as Jenna Holmes kept out eight penalty corners.

Ireland: J Holmes, A Naughton, E Beatty, A Cooke, K Mullan, R Barry (capt), F Timmins, K Froeling, D Gorman, L Ewart, K McDonald
Subs: L McCarthy, R Upton, J Orr, E Russell, L McKee

Volvo girl’s European Championships, Group A results: Netherlands 4 (Frederique Derkx, Marloes Keetels, Liselotte van Mens, Sian Keil) Ireland 0; Belgium 3 Scotland 0
Standings: 1. Netherlands 3pts (+4) 2. Belgium 3pts (+3) 3. Scotland 0pts (-3) 4. Ireland 0pts (-4)

Fixtures, Wednesday (all at Irish time): Ireland vs Scotland, 3pm; Thursday: Ireland vs Belgium, 5pm

Group B results: Germany 6 France 0; England 3 Spain 1
Standings: 1. Germany 3pts (+6) 2. England 3pts (+2) 3. Spain 0pts (-2) France 0pts (-6)

** Featured photos taken by Frank Uijlenbroek, for more of his pictures from the tournament, click here

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