Neuchatel, Switzerland, December 13, 2019 – Reigning champions Sweden and World Number Four the Czech Republic both claimed crushing victories in their quarter-final ties, setting up a semi-final bracket consisting exclusively of the world’s top four.
The Czechs will face a stern test to keep their gold medal dream alive against hosts Switzerland in the final four, while Sweden will lock horns with arch rivals Finland.
Elsewhere, another Scandinavian derby fell the way of Norway, who wrapped up ninth place, while Australia took their revenge for their group defeat by Singapore to topple the southeast Asian side and take 11th place in the final table.
Patinoires du Littoral:
10:00 am- Singapore 1:3 Australia (11th Place)
Australia avenged their group phase defeat against Singapore by coming from behind to beat the Southeast Asians 3:1, securing 11th place at the 2019 WFC.
Singapore’s best performer on the day, Mindy Lim, threatened to set them on their way to another win over the Aussies as she provided for Amanda Yeap to tuck home after 12 minutes, but Australia turned the game around in a hectic minute.
Rosemary Burtenshaw assisted Amanda Bartrim who finished strongly to draw Australia level, before Bartrim clinched her brace just twenty seconds later as she converted from Alexandra Staib’s pass.
A goalless second period followed as both sides jostled for control of the game, with Australian goalkeeper Shannon Barnes having plenty to do to keep the Singaporeans at bay; making 28 saves across the game.
Barnes’ heroics to preserve the Australian lead paid dividends four minutes into the closing period, as Yasmin Skene fired in from Blaise Hodges’ pass to lift the Aussies with a two-goal cushion, which they would see through to the end to crown a fine campaign.
1:00 pm- Denmark 2:3 Norway (9th Place)
Norway mounted a spectacular late comeback to come from 2:1 down and beat near neighbours Denmark for a second time at WFC 2019, this time sealing ninth place after a tense encounter.
Norwegian star Rikke Ingebrigtsli Hansen was once more the orchestrator of her team’s success, assisting Sofie Kristiansen’s equaliser with little under seven minutes remaining before hitting the winner two and a half minutes from time.
Before Norway’s late show, the Danes largely had the better of the game. A tight first period between the two Scandinavian sides looked destined to be goalless until Cecilia Di Nardo, the joint all-time leading goalscorer at Women’s World Championship level, provided for Klara Fjorder to edge Denmark ahead just nineteen seconds before the break.
A similar second period followed as Norway cranked up the pressure, only to be thwarted by Marie Amalie Moller on numerous occasions, but the Norwegians did manage to get back on terms after Marie Gundersen forced the ball in after receiving Martine Simonsen’s pass.
The game remained deadlocked going into the closing period, and just over a minute after play re-commenced, the Danes snatched the lead once more, Klara Fjorder completing her brace from Kristine Moller Sorensen’s lay-off.
The Danes were drawing agonisingly close to avenging their defeat to Norway back in the group phase, but they would be denied in the final seven minutes by Ingebrigtsli Hansen’s masterclass.
The star attacker put the ball on a plate for Sofie Kristiansen to restore parity after 53 minutes, before capping her solo effort with a fine finish to clinch the Norwegian victory.
4:00 pm- Czech Republic 11:4 Poland (Quarter-Final)
The World Number Four ranked Czech Republic eased aside Poland to advance to the semi-finals of the 2019 WFC where they will face host-nation Switzerland.
It was a composed and masterful performance from the Czech forward line as they helped their side maintain control of the contest throughout, but they did suffer an early hiccup as Malwina Zagorska drew first blood for the Poles after two and a half minutes.
It quickly turned into a frantic and high-scoring opening third from there, as the Czechs hit three goals without reply to lead 4:1; Tereza Urbankova, Michaela Mlejnkova, Eliska Krupnova and Magdalena Plaskova all on the scoresheet. They wouldn’t see the lead through to the break though, as Katarzyna Rogala and Justyna Krzywak both converted to ensure the Czech lead was a slender 4:3 by the first interval.
It didn’t take long after the break for the Czechs to rediscover their goalscoring touch, and they pulled clear over the second period through Nela Jirakova and a quick-fire hattrick from player of the match Martina Repkova to extend the advantage to 8:3.
The four unanswered Czech goals seemed to decisively knock the stuffing out of Poland, and although Krzywak would grab herself a second to reduce the deficit to 8:4, the Czechs quickly retaliated with finishes from Denisa Ratajova, Nela Kapcova, before Mlejnkova struck again to cap off the win.
A resounding 11:4 victory and a real confidence booster for the Czech Republic ahead of their last four battle with the in-form hosts, while Poland will drop off into the fifth to eighth classification bracket where they face Latvia next.
7:00 pm- Sweden 26:2 Germany (Quarter-Final)
Defending champions Sweden put on a spellbinding performance to blow away a shell-shocked Germany 26:2 in their quarter-final, setting up a semi-final tie with old rivals Finland.
The all-Scandinavian semi-final between the two arch rivals and leading powers in world Floorball is a repeat of the 2017 final, and both will be hoping to get one over on their near neighbours once more. The spectacle is a rich reward for both of the top two who have enjoyed superb campaigns, however, this victory was a real statement of intent for the Swedes, who dispatched Germany with minimal fuss to really sound out their credentials ahead of what will be their biggest test in Neuchâtel so far.
The Swedes didn’t look back from the moment Iza Rydfjall hit her first goal of the tournament and set the defending champions on their way within two minutes, with Sara Steen, Stephanie Boberg, Alice Granstedt, Sofia Joelsson, Moa Tschop and Emelie Wibron all joining her on the scoresheet before the first break. The Germans did manage to put a small scratch in the Swedish armour before the klaxon, as Alexandra Kurth swept in a consolation goal.
If Sweden’s opening third performance was impressive, their second period showing was devastating. Ellen Rasmussen got the rout back underway, with Wibron and Steen following up with their second goal of the game.
Anna Wijk then helped herself to a brace either side of Joelsson’s second goal of the game, before defender Steen struck again to clinch her hattrick and Sweden’s fifteenth.
Joelsson then sealed her hattrick with a cool finish, before Boberg and Tschop both popped up in the right place at the right time to notch their braces. The score was 18:1, and German heads were well and truly down, but they would take one more kick in the teeth before the break as Joelsson was on hand again to crash in her fourth. 19:1, the klaxon sounded, and the hapless Germans could regroup.
Yet, the third period would bring no respite as Germany struggled to exercise any grip on the game. Johanna Hultgren joined her compatriots on the scoresheet as she pierced the German resistance for the 20th time, before veteran Wijk completed her hattrick for a 21:1 scoreline.
It was a tormenting evening for the Germans, and they would find some momentary relief as Theresa Beppler-Alt notched a second goal, but their only seemed to aggravate the champions. Joelsson’s fifth goal came soon after to quickly suck the wind back out of German sails. Amanda Delgado Johansson, yet to get on the scoresheet, notched a swift brace, while Ida Sundberg also grabbed a goal for herself.
It was a display of complete dominance for Sweden, and Boberg would wrap up the result with a personal accolade as she smartly finished to help herself to a hattrick to round off the result. 26:2, a real statement of intent from Sweden, while Germany will have to lick their wounds and prepare for a classification tie with Slovakia.