Hockey WC: French almost cause revolution vs Spain

Updated: Dec 04, 2018, 14:42 IST | Ashwin Ferro | Bhubaneswar

France nearly won it when they were awarded a penalty stroke in the dying moments but 'keeper Cortes dived to his right to ward off the danger and ensure the Pool A teams shared the spoils

Representational picture
Representational picture

Playing in the World Cup after a gap of 28 years, France coach Jeroen Delmee has promised an upset or two here, and almost delivered against World No. 8 Spain yesterday. The Frenchmen, ranked the lowest in the tournament (No. 20), saw Hugo Genestet's penalty stroke in the final quarter saved by Spanish custodian Quicko Cortes, forcing them to settle for a 1-1 draw.

The result is commendable given France's capital city back home is going through a civil war-like situation with riots having broken out in Paris as people protest against the government's rising fuel prices leading to national chaos. Contrastingly on the Kalinga turf yesterday, it was a smooth start for the French, who scored the opening goal as early as the sixth minute through Tom Genestet. Thereafter, they held the Spaniards well until the 48th minute when Alvaro Iglesias netted the equaliser.

However, France nearly won it when they were awarded a penalty stroke in the dying moments but 'keeper Cortes dived to his right to ward off the danger and ensure the Pool A teams shared the spoils. In the day's second match, Olympic champs Argentina beat New Zealand 3-0, with Agustin Mazzilli, Lucas Vila and Lucas Martinez scoring a goal each.

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