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GB shoot down Dutch to win first crown

By Matt McGeehan

Great Britain's task was a tough one. None of the players in the current Dutch squad had ever lost at the Olympics.

Holland, winners in 2008 and 2012, last lost in the 2004 final to Germany and had one defeat in 12 prior meetings with Britain at major tournaments.

Bronze in 1992 and four years ago was the previous best performance by a British women's team, but they wanted the nation to stop talking about the men's win in 1988 in Seoul.

And they emulated that achievement by clinching gold on penalty strokes following a 3-3 draw with the mighty Dutch.

Sophie Bray conjured up a goal for Lily Owsley but Holland equalised through Kitty van Male. Maartje Paumen stroked in a penalty corner for the Dutch before Crista Cullen found a gaping hole and swept the ball in.

The Dutch took the lead again in the third quarter when Paumen returned the ball to Van Male to tuck in.

Britain pressed forward in the final 15 minutes, however, and Nicola White bundled in following a penalty corner to equalise.

So, the gold medal was determined by a penalty shootout.

Helen Richardson-Walsh and Alex Danson were denied, but Hinch twice kept the Dutch at bay to keep Britain level.

Richardson-Walsh scored a flick after Georgie Twigg was fouled and Hinch saved again, but Laura Unsworth blazed her effort over.

Margot van Geffen hit the post, and Hollie Webb stroked him the decisive effort.

Belfast Telegraph


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