India were outclassed and outplayed in a spectacular fashion as Belgium thrash India by 4-0. Florent Van Aubel’s hattrick played a pivotal role in side’s passage to the final.
Indian defence succumbed to the applied by the aggressive Belgian side in the semi-final of the FIH Hockey World League at the KHC Dragons stadium.
Striker Florent Van Aubel was in a red-hot form and was looking imperious from the word go. Opening Belgium’s account in the second minute owing to a lapse in defence at the top of the Indian circle, Van Aubel went on to score two more goals in the second half from penalty corner rebounds, dashing any hopes of an Indian comeback.
A lapse in judgement by Jasjit Singh in controlling the ball led to the first goal. Felix Denayer squared up for Van Aubel, who scored with a firm reverse shot.
Six minutes later, Belgium were 2-0 up on their first penalty corner. Aurther Van Doren’s penalty was padded away by Sreejesh only to be slotted home by Cosyns.
India’s moment came in the 19th minute when Satbir Singh snatched the ball from Van Doren but could not beat the keeper with his rasping reverse drive. India’s best opportunity came in the 26th minute when a cross rebounded off the goalkeeper into the path of Yuvraj Walmiki, who could only drag the shot wide.
From then it was Van Aubel’s show, who scored twice of penalty corner rebounds. Meanwhile India fluffed all the penalty corners that came their way.
In the final on Sunday, Belgium will play winner of second semi-final between World Champions Australia and Great Britain, while India will play for bronze.