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Holland explodes “amateur” WWC organization

Holland explodes “amateur” WWC organization

ReutersJuly 21, 2023, 05:01 a.m. ET2 minutes to read

The Netherlands accused the Women’s World Cup of amateur staging as they complained about their training conditions in New Zealand, but they still used the Bay Oval in Tauranga to prepare for their opening match on Sunday.

Coach Anders Juncker told reporters that he feared his players might be injured on the field, as there is a solid cricket pitch in the middle, which the Dutch requested months ago.

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“When we got here on Wednesday, I thought, ‘Now what is this now?'” “I wouldn’t practice for this,” he said of the Bay of Plenty test cricket venue.

“We raised concerns about the cricket ground before, promised things and now we are very disappointed and angry. We are not satisfied,” Juncker said.

“We want to play a good first game against Portugal here, we want to have a great preparation, a great tournament, and also consider ourselves a great team. That doesn’t fit. That goes with first-class amateurism.”

The Netherlands play their first World Cup match against Portugal on Sunday.Rico Brewer/Socrates/Getty Images

The KNVB said it had expressed its concerns to FIFA when it made two inspection visits in each of October and February, promising to remove the hard pitch after the cricket season and by the time the Dutch team arrived in New Zealand.

“If you fall on it with your knee or shoulder, you might have a problem. If you run from the grass onto that pitch, it’s also not good for the muscles and tendons that are already under tension,” Juncker said.

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But the Dutch have trained there and will continue to do so ahead of their opening Group E match against Portugal in Dunedin on Sunday. However, they dispensed with the plans for any full pitch training.

“With other drills we can train around that court, but 11v11 doesn’t work,” the coach added.

“There were two other options. We could go to Dunedin earlier, but then you have to rearrange hotels and flights and everyone goes the wrong way.

“There was also a suggestion that we go to Hamilton. That’s an hour and a half drive. That sounds easy, but then you’ll be on the road from 10am to 6pm for one training session,” Junker said.