Revenge was served baking hot as the Netherlands blasted away GB – and banished Rio heartache – on a searing, brutal morning in Tokyo.
In 2016, with the BBC News delayed and a hooked nation watching, goalkeeper Maddie Hinch clinched gold in a dramatic penalty shootout following a pulsating 3-3 draw between the two sides.
But there was sadly to be no repeat in a lopsided semi-final. Not even the merest hint of one.
The Netherlands blasted away Team GB – and banished Rio heartache – to win 5-1 in the semis
Holland will face the winner of the other semi between Argentina and India for the gold medal
GB keeper Maddie Hinch conceded five goals in humid conditions in the Japanese capital
With the mercury hitting 32C and humidity at 71 per cent, Mark Hager’s side had no answers to a rolling, brilliant orange machine who illustrated why they are the world’s best.
Five goals – one for every year they have had to wait to get their own back – in a relentless display of ruthless attacking.
A Dutch double, two goals in two minutes at the start of the second quarter from Felice Albers and Marloes Keetels, as good as killed what was a lesson.
Perhaps understandably after their bitter experience in Brazil, they went on to show no mercy. On attack, they were more dynamic and imaginative. In defence they were rock solid.
The Netherlands simply had too much for Great Britain on a searing hot morning in Tokyo
After their quick-fire brace, Maria Verschoor added a third in the third with a tremendous, reactive flick from a penalty corner to increase the pain, with GB barely managing a shot in anger, and before the quarter was out Albers grabbed a second from close range to make it four.
A response belatedly arrived when Giselle Ansley swept home from a penalty corner but respite was brief.
The prolific Frederique Matla put away her ninth of the competition early in the fourth and the misery was complete.
GB beat the Netherlands on penalties to win gold in Rio but revenge was served on Wednesday
The end arrived, thankfully, at 12.10pm with the temperature up at 33C. Questions should be asked of the organisers on a day when GB could find no answers.
The Netherlands blitzed through their group winning all five matches. In the quarters, they brushed aside New Zealand 3-0. After this, few would bet against them going one better than Rio.
For Britain, bronze is the best they can do.
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