Thursday, May 26, 2022

Tokyo Olympics Hockey: Fracas in heat as Argentina and Spain go head-to-head

Lucas Rossi was not the only player to lose their cool as Dutch midfielder Billy Bakker was fuming after spending five minutes in the sin-bin

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Tom Pilcher
Tom Pilcher
Tom Pilcher is a sports writer who covered the 2008/2012 Olympics for Reuters, mainly handball and cycling, and Team GB live blogger in 2016.

From the ‘Euro Disney’ feel of the athletes’ village to pitch tempers in the Olympic cauldron. The mercury wasn’t the only thing rising in Spain and Argentina’s men’s Pool A opening clash at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games – hockey’s old guard got heated too.

When Spanish forward David Alegre went down with cramp at the death, Argentine 2016 gold medallist Lucas Rossi used his stick to prod his fallen opponent, prompting a bad-tempered fracas as the players also contended with energy-sapping heat in the 1-1 draw.

Defender Rossi’s meltdown was all the more bizarre considering his teammate Matias Rey was helping Alegre at the time before Spaniard Xavier Lleonart angrily ushered Rossi, 36, away and remonstrated with officials.

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