Four shoot-outs decide ABN AMRO EHL FINAL4 spots after intense day

Four shoot-outs decided the second set of ABN AMRO EHL FINAL4 sides as Rot-Weiss Köln, Düsseldorfer HC, Atlètic Terrassa and Den Bosch all keeping their title dreams alive into the weekend at the Wagener Stadium.

Rot-Weiss will now meet Atlètic in the men’s FINAL4 while Düsseldorf face Den Bosch on Sunday. 

Saturday, meanwhile, sees the first semi-final games with Bloemendaal facing Racing Club de Bruxelles (13.45 CET) and Club de Campo meeting Complutense in the women’s competition at 16.00 CET.

Here’s a round-up of the action from day two.


Hamburger Polo Club 4 (K Russell 2 Rot-Weiss Köln 4 (F Pelzner, T Prinz, M Grambsuch, M van der Weerden), Rot-Weiss win shoot-out 3-0

Rot-Weiss Köln produced a comeback for the ages as they came back from 4-1 down to win a shoot-out and advance to the FINAL4 of the men’s competition in breathtaking fashion.

Polo got off to a great start as Kane Russell netted twice in the first 17 minutes – one stroke, one corner – either side of a strike from Florian Pelzner for a 2-1 lead. Their counter-attack game was working really well as they frustrated Rot-Weiss for long periods and they pulled further clear in the second half.

Max Silanoglu ghosted around the right baseline and turned in a third goal and then Constantin Staib popped in a close-range effort. It seemingly put them out of sight but the Köln got a lifeline when Thies Prinz juggled the ball brilliantly into the goal just before the end of the third quarter.

Vincent Vanasch celebrates. Picture: Frank Uijlenbroek/World Sport Pics

Polo’s Paul Smith hit the post in a vital moment which would have made it 5-2; instead, Mats Grambusch made it really tight with a smart finish and then Mink van der Weerden completed the fightback with a drag-flick with two minutes to go.

And so it went to shoot-out where Rot-Weiss held their nerve, scoring their first three efforts while Polo could not find a way past Vincent Vanasch. They go through to the FINAL4 as a result.

Atlètic Terrassa 2 (Joan Tarres, Pol Cabré-Verdiell) Gantoise 2 (Maxime Deplus, Antoine Kina), Atlètic win shoot-out 3-2

Atlètic Terrassa completed the men’s FINAL4 line-up as Marc Calzada produced the goods in a shoot-out once more to send their fans delirious after another big EHL tussle with Gantoise.

Joan Tarres broke the deadlock with a thunderous strike from the top of the D on the volley following a cracking piece of build-up play down the right wing in the 14th minute.

Gantoise replied just the other side of the first break from their third corner of the contest, Maxime Deplus following up a rebound created by Antoine Kina’s slap at goal.

After that big burst, it was the Belgian side who came on strong but found Atlètic a tough nut to crack. Johannes Mooij had to scoop one effort off the goal line while – in the third quarter – it was panic stations as Roman Duvekot miscued from a glorious chances and Mathis Clément also missed out.

Antoine Kina hit the post from an improvised, bouncing corner shot and the pressure eventually told with eight minutes to go when he pushed their ninth corner into the left side of the backboard.

But Atlèti responded brilliantly with Marc Salles driving them on. He set Jordi Bonastre free and his cross found Pol Cabré-Verdiell who smashed home from mid-circle.

It made for a third shoot-out of the day in which the first five were all scored with Atlètic leading 3-2. After that, the next five were all missed as Marc Calzada denied Timothée Clément for a big victory.


Surbiton 1 (Steph Elliott) Düsseldorfer HC 1 (Lisa Nolte), Düsseldorf win shoot-out 3-1

Lisa Nolte and Nathalie Kubalski’s heroics saw Düsseldorfer HC advance to the FINAL4 for the first time as they scored a late equaliser and then won a shoot-out.

Steph Elliott gave Surbiton a vital lead early in the second quarter when she reacted quickest to a corner rebound created by Giselle Ansley’s piledriver. Natalie Kubalski saved the first up shot well but Elliott’s touch flew high over the prone goalkeeper.

Düsseldorf made most of the waves through the third quarter with Clara Ycart charging forward but they were unable to find a way past the composed Giselle Ansley with Sabbie Heesh making some neat blocks.

Lisa Nolte celebrates with her Düsseldorfer HC team mates. Picture: Frank Uijlenbroek/World Sport Pics

The German side did get back level, however, with 12 minutes to go when Lisa Nolte struck hard from the top of the circle, the ball skipping into the right corner.

After that, the pressure was incessant as Düsseldorf camped in the Surbiton 23-metre zone but never really broke through the ranks in the circle for a clean shot. 

And so it developed to the second shoot-out of the day. Both goalkeepers dominated the early exchanges with Heesh and Nathalie Kubalski saving twice each before Sara Strauss, Izzy Petter and Agustina Albertarrio scored.

Kubalski saved once more and the Nolte slotted home for a 3-1 success.

HC s’Hertogenbosch 1 (Laura Nunnink) SCHC 1 (Yibbi Jansen), Den Bosch win shoot-out 3-2

Josine Koning’s shoot-out heroics propelled Den Bosch in the women’s ABN AMRO EHL FINAL4 as they won a titanic tussle against Dutch rivals SCHC.

The eventual winners had come out of the blocks the quickest with Noor Omrani’s quick shot on the turn only denied by the inside of the post. The Brabant club put on the early pressure before Xan de Waard started producing some midfield magic and SCHC got a foothold in the contest.

Sanne Koolen did brilliantly to take a Yibbi Jansen shot off the line from a corner drag-flick. They would have the better of a very tight second quarter but glimpses of the goal were hard to come by.

The breakthrough came early in the second half from a corner, Frédérique Matla’s shot was charged down but fell nicely for Laura Nunnink who smashed it into the backboard.

Jansen, however, wiped out the advantage in quick time – her drag this time hit the body of Koolen on the line. She stepped up to score her first EHL goal from the penalty spot.

It continued to be cagey after that. Den Bosch drew the best from Alexandra Heerbaart with a solid double-save while composed blocks inside the p-spot prevented further danger.

At the far end, Mette Winter had a golden chance but she chipped wide on her backhand with two minutes left. Even later on, Winter so nearly unlocked the door with 10 seconds left, her pass to the back post just about eluding the diving Jansen.

Josine Koning’s two early saves had Den Bosch shading the shoot-out from early on as Matla overcame a stroke miss to score her own shoot-out. It meant they lead 3-2 going into the final round. De Waard was initially awarded a stroke but, on video, it was overturned to spark the Den Bosch celebrations.