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Hockey returns as La Gantoise go top

La Gantoise moved back to the top of the Belgian men’s Honor Division following the competition’s return to action on Sunday following a Covid-related cessation.

They got the best of Antwerp to make it seven wins in eight games – with a back match against struggling Namur also in the pipeline – as they remain the only unbeaten side.

Pascal Kina’s side led 2-0 after six minutes via goals from François Goyet and Juan Saladino. Scottish international Hamish Imrie pulled one back but Leandro Tolini and a hat trick from Alex de Paeuw completed a 6-2 success.

Previous leaders Orée were well beaten by Waterloo Ducks 3-0 with Elliot van Strydonck setting the Ducks on their way with a ninth minute opening goal. Nicolas Dumont and Louis Capelle netted second half goals to win the day.

For John-John Dohmen, it was his first match for Orée against Waterloo, the club he served so well for so long: “I want to remain positive despite the defeat,” he told Le Soir after the match.

“We controlled possession and our defensive outletting was very good. We didn’t make any mistakes but it was in the conclusion zone that we were much too naive. At this level, we have to be better. They proved to be more dangerous.”

The Ducks’ skipper Gauthier Boccard was delighted with the result: “We converted our big chances and took three valuable points given the schedule that awaits us to complete this first round of the season.  

“We were not technically and tactically ready after only 10 days of preparation. But we played with enthusiasm. Mentally, we were stronger than our opponents and it paid off. ”

The win sees Waterloo close the gap to second placed Orée to one point while their place in the top four also strengthened with Leopold drawing 2-2 with Dragons.  

KHC Leuven were caught in the last few minutes by a Simon van Diest equaliser to draw 1-1 with Herakles. German women’s head coach Xavier Reckinger was a surprise inclusion in the Hera line-up.  

At the bottom, Namur recorded their first win of the season with a 3-2 success against the Old Club.

Euro Hockey League media release

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