Women’s World Cup of Hockey: respect, ladies Panthers

The Red Panthers took a Dutch lesson for… 15 minutes. Let the tornado oranje pass. Paralyzed by the challenge and the pressure of 10,000 spectators, the Belgians did not exist. The worst was to be feared. He did not come. This quarter-final kept all its promises. The Belgians did more than resist against the Olympic champions. Admittedly, the gap still exists between them and the number ones, but they have effectively closed the gap. They still lacked a big game in a big tournament against a very big nation. They hold it. It will serve as a reference. A kind of founding act.

The lessons of this short defeat will be used to prepare for the next challenges. This group does not lack talent and desire. Red Panthers, keep this ambition and this new form of arrogance. She suits you so well. On this World Cup, the proteges of Raoul Ehren propelled Belgian women’s hockey into a new era. It was premature to talk about a medal, but the hope for a bright future is real. It will take them a few more years to reach the top of their game. Use the Pro League to enter the Euros next summer with the aim of finishing just behind the Netherlands… or just ahead.

On this World Cup, these Panthers lacked a bit of success during their pool match against Australia. It was on that day that they wasted their chance of top 4. Beating South Africa, Japan and Chile is part of the minima for them. Their performance against the Netherlands at Wagener Stadium commands the greatest respect.

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