Janneke Schopman: India lost momentum after the ‘clock’ incident

“Frustrated and angry” by the ‘clock howler’ during the India’s semifinal loss to Australia, coach Janneke Schopman said her side was left deflated and lost momentum after the incident.

The Hockeyroos set up the gold-medal clash against England after a controversial 3-0 win over India on penalties here on Friday. During the shootout, Australia’s Rosie Malone missed her shot but to the dismay of the Indian team and fans, the forward was given a second chance as a technical official, B. Morgan of England, had failed to start the clock on time.

Each player gets eight seconds to put the ball into the net in the shootout.

Given a second chance, Malone scored and that set the tone for the shootout as the Indians failed their first three attempts, while Australia converted all their chances. “After that, we lost a little bit of our momentum. Then it did go in, and everyone is deflated,” Schopman, a double Olympic medallist said.

“I’m not using it as an excuse, but when you make the save, that’s an enormous boost for the team and you turn the decision around and the girls are really upset about it,” she added.

Narrating the incident, she said: “The official’s hand was up, but I didn’t really know and the umpires – A. Church and H. Harrison of England – also did not. So, that’s why I’m frustrated because the umpires said we have to retake it. I tried to calm them down. In hindsight it’s 50-50 but I’m sure their focus was lost a little bit after that moment,” a frustrated Schopman said.

The match had headed to penalties after both the teams were tied 1-1 at the end of regulation time.

“It’s all human and all emotion. Should we be better? That’s what I was trying to say, ‘girls it doesn’t matter, it doesn’t matter’. But of course it does matter and of course I am angry also because I don’t think even the officials understood what happened.