Argentina’s Rio Olympics hero, Peillat switched nationality to Germany last February after a fall out with the Argentine team management
Drag flicker Gonzalo Peillat justified his newfound German citizenship with a fine hat-trick as Germany shocked World No. 1 Australia 4-3 in the first semi-final at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar. Argentina’s Rio Olympics hero, Peillat switched nationality to Germany last February after a fall out with the Argentine team management.
In fact, so interesting was this match that Team India, which is 400km away at Rourkela here, presumably did not turn up for their scheduled 6:30pm practice session at the Birsa Munda Stadium as it coincided with the closing moments of the seven-goal thriller. That they didn’t inform the few mediapersons, who showed up to cover their training, is a different issue.
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Australia went ahead through a Jeremy Hayward (11th minute) drag flick after which Nathan Ephraums (26th) made it 2-0. Peillat rattled the Aussie defence twice (42nd and 51st minutes) in a span of three minutes for 2-2. Blake Govers (57th) put Australia ahead again before Peillat’s hat-trick (58th minute) saw parity restored once more. Finally, with six seconds left on the clock, a German cross somehow found its way through three Aussie defenders and fell for Niklas Wellan (59th) bang in front of goal for an easy tap-in.
In the second semi-final, reigning world and Olympic champs Belgium beat The Netherlands 3-2 via the shootout after the scores were locked at 2-2. Jip Janssen (11th and 35th) scored a brace for The Netherlands while Tom Boon (26th) and Nicolas De Kerpel (44th) netted one each for Belgium. Belgian goalkeeper Vincent Vanasch emerged the hero for his team denying the Dutch thrice in the subsequent shootout.