Tournament off for hockey women: Argentina ends the German medal series

Tournament off for hockey women
Argentina ends the German medal series

Olympic medals are already a tradition among German women hockey, Sydney in 2000 was the last tournament without precious metals. But now the series is broken: After the clear defeat against Argentina in the quarter-finals, they return home early.

From the dream of the fifth Olympic medal in a row: Germany’s hockey women are returning from summer games for the first time in 21 years without precious metal. The team of national coach Xavier Reckinger lost on Monday in Tokyo in the quarter-finals against Argentina with 0: 3 (0: 2) and was eliminated. Agustina Albertarrio in the 27th minute, Maria Jose Granatto (29th) and Valentina Raposo (52nd) scored the deserved victory for the clearly superior South Americans.

“The disappointment is great. It will be a while before we can digest that,” said Coach Reckinger. “We could not implement our plan and have not found any solutions.” The DHB women were last without a medal at the Olympics in Sydney in 2000. After that, there were two golds (2008, 2012) and two bronze medals (2004, 2016). Precious metal was the goal in Tokyo too – but it wasn’t supposed to be. “It didn’t go together. We didn’t expect that we would be standing next to us,” said Lisa Altenburg. “We lacked the courage and the conviction. This is a day that one would like to erase from memory.”

The German team, which had finished the preliminary round in second behind the World Cup second Netherlands, got on the defensive right at the beginning of the game. Argentina dominated the event and barely let the DHB women, who played all in black, develop in the humid heat of over 30 degrees.

Germany hardly came into play

Germany had little to counter the offensive force of the South Americans. After all, the defense was initially secure, so that even three penalty corners were survived without damage in the first quarter. Argentina stayed on the trigger in the second quarter as well. Goalkeeper Julia Sonntag had to use all her skills a few times to avoid falling behind. In the German game, on the other hand, a lot seemed random. Dangerous attacks: Nothing. So it was only a matter of time before the two-time world champion from Argentina could celebrate for the first time. Albertarrio completed a nice combination of close range. Just before the break, Granatto increased. After the change, the German team came back to the field with more energy and now pressed on the connection. But the efforts were unsuccessful in the third quarter because the few opportunities were not exploited.

So there was only hope of a successful final spurt, which, however, failed to materialize. Again and again the German players got stuck on the compact defense of the opponent. The third goal conceded by Raposo after a penalty corner finally sealed the Olympic knockout of the European Championship runner-up, whose resistance was now finally broken.