Belgium cruise past Canada 2-1 in hockey World Cup opener

Belgium hockey team. Photograph:( Twitter )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Nov 28, 2018, 07.45 PM (IST)

Belgium defeated Canada 2-1 in the first match of Men's Hockey World Cup 2018 on Wednesday.

The Olympic silver medallist Belgium's created the pressure in the first quarter itself through a fine field strike by Felix Denayer in the third minute of the game.

In the second quarter, they did not only saved a penalty corner but also scored again, extending the lead to 2-0.

In the 12th minute, captain Thomas Briels found the back of the net again for Belgium but the goal was disallowed after Canada went for the referral, claiming the ball hit his hand before rolling on to the goal. 

As it happened | Belgium vs Canada

However, he scored with a brilliant strike after he was set up by Arthur van Doren. 

Doren was awarded player of the match for his overall performance during the match.

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Belgium completely dominated the first two quarters as Canada hardly managed to get a shot at the opposition goal. 

But they failed to keep up the momentum as after the halftime, Canada started to find their grip on the match.  

They fought brilliantly to pull a goal back through Mark Pearson's penalty corner conversion in the 48th minute. 

It was far from an ideal start for Belgium as they wasted as many as four penalty corners in the match, a fact which their captain Thomas Briels accepted. 

"We played a very good first half. We started positively and dominated but Canada came back strongly after halftime to give us some tough time," Briels said. 

Belgium will next face hosts India on December 2 while Canada will be up against South Africa.