Sunday, December 3, 2023

‘We’re here to win gold’: England men aim for Euro Hockey gold and Olympic berth

INTERVIEW: Zach Wallace on England's European Hockey Championship run and Dutch opponents

Monchengladbach — Sunday’s EuroHockey Championship men’s final has more than just a major title on the line — a first since 2009 for England and the Netherlands going for their fourth title in five editions.

The winner will win an automatic ticket to the Paris Olympics. The runner up? A winter of preparation before an Olympic qualifier in January. “We came here to win this, none of us came here for silver,” said England’s Zach Wallace on the eve of their first major final for 14 years.

England play for gold courtesy of their shoot-out epic over hosts Germany, one where they upended Die Honamas’ video analysis by sending on James Mazerelo for the shoot-out and adding David Ames and Conor Williamson to their starting five. Both efforts – a top of the circle ripper and a lovely lift – formed part of their 5-4 success as Mazerelo saved from Germany’s hometown skipper Mats Grambusch. 

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