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Spain hold the Netherlands
December 02, 2007 21:42 IST
Spain held defending champions and favourites the Netherlands to a 3-3 draw at the Champions Trophy in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday.
In the day's other matches, Australia held off Pakistan 2-1, Germany [Images] went on top of the table by easing past South Korea 2-1 and Great Britain scored a gritty 3-2 win over hosts Malaysia.
The Spain-Netherlands match was by far the most exciting of the tournament so far.
Spain had a score to settle after the Netherlands beat them 3-2 in the European Championship final in August to snatch their continental title.
The Netherlands went ahead with a superb field goal through Teun de Nooijer in the sixth minute. Then Spain took control of the game by half-time and pushed the Dutch back with two field goals through Victor Sojo and Eduard Tubau.
After the break, the Dutchmen came back strong and scored from a well-rehearsed free hit when Rob Reckers connected from close range in the 42nd minute.
Spain hit back when they broke through in the 48th minute, with David Alegre slamming home a long clearance from midfield, but again the Netherlands came back, this time Ronald Brouwer thumping home the equaliser in the 55th.
Australia, after an unexpected 1-0 defeat to Korea on Friday, struggled to cope with the young Pakistan forwards, but they took the lead on a counter-attack in the 21st minute.
After the break, Australia struck again after a superb move from midfield through Grant Schubert.
Pakistan then hit back through Akhtar Ali in the 57th but despite the pressure, the Aussies held on for their second win of the tournament.
In the Germany-Korea match, the European team conceded in the fifth minute when Yeo Woon-Kon put Korea ahead. But the eight-time champions came back strongly with goals from Nicolas Emmerling in the 41st minute and Sebastien Draguhn in the 58th.
Britain achieved their first win of the tournament when they beat host nation Malaysia 3-2.