Belgium won a nerve-wracking shootout to claim gold within the men’s Olympic hockey last here at the Tokyo 2020 (in 2021) Games.
After taking the lead within the 32nd minute through Florent van Aubel. The Belgians were pegged back as Australia leveled within the fourth quarter. With an objective from Thomas Whetton to take off the scores 1-1 full-time.
Belgium’s men’s group had never won an Olympic gold medal. With a silver award at Rio 2016 and a bronze at Antwerp 1920, their best wraps up before nowadays.
The shootout was not without its show, with Belgian goalkeeper Vincent Vanasch halting three Australian shots. And the ultimate Australian punishment having to be re-taken after consultation with the video referee.
In any case, Belgium prevailed in the end, writing their names into the history books with their, to begin with, Olympic triumph.
Felix Denayer couldn’t cover up his bliss after the match, reserving special praise for goalkeeper Vanasch.
“I think I am still dreaming and overwhelmed by feelings,” he said. “But it’ll truly come genuine when we get it around the neck. It is something we have been holding up for our whole lives. We imagined almost it, we accepted we might accomplish it, but we knew it was getting to be really, really hard.
“This was the second opportunity, we lost five years back, and now we have got it. Astonishing. I am super pleased with this group.
“In the end a shoot-out, and we have some crazy, crazy goalie who took it home for us.”
Punishment legend Vanasch lauded his colleagues who battled so difficult to win the Olympic gold.
“It’s history again,” he said. “It was history at the World Cup, at the European Championships and now it’s history at the Olympics. I will cherish that minute for a long time. This group could be a dream team.”