Full Time: Netherlands stick to the plan and defeat the Australia in their Semi Final clash as it takes a Penalty Shootout to decide the winner of this well-matched game on 15th December at the OHMWC Bhubaneswar 2018.
Three-time champions Netherlands stormed into the final of the FIH Men's Hockey World Cup 2018 after going past Australia 2(3)-2(4) via sudden death in the pulsating second semi-final at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar
Check England vs Australia, Bronze medal match and Belgium vs Netherlands Final LIVE score and match updates here
The Dutch side will now face Olympic silver medallists Belgium in the gold medal match on Sunday before that Australia and England will play for Bronze. In the first semi-final, Olympic silver medallist Belgium created history by making their maiden appearance in the men's hockey World Cup summit clash, thrashing England 6-0.
Hockey World Cup 2018 highlights, Semifinal 2: Australia vs Netherlands
The jampacked Kalinga crowd could not have asked for a better Saturday evening as Netherlands gunning for their fourth World Cup title after two decades contained two-time defending champions Australia 2-2 at the end of regulation time.
As the tie proceeded for this World Cup's first shootout to break the deadlock, neither of the teams were in the mood to give anything away as the shootout resulted in another tie at 3-3.
The contest then headed for sudden death when the Dutch side managed to get over the line to enter their fourth World Cup final for the first time since 1998.
Earlier, in regulation time Glenn Schuurman (9th minute) and Seve van Ass(20th) got the Netherlands to a 2-0 advantage before Tim Howard (44th) and Eddie Ockenden (60th) helped Australia bounce back and take the tie to the shootout.
In the other semi-final played earlier on Saturday, Belgium entered their maiden World Cup final after thrashing a disjointed England 6-0.
The Belgians scored in all four periods with Alexander Hendrickx (19th, 44th, 50th minutes) converting three penalty corners to complete a hat-trick.
Tom Boon (7th), Cedric Charlier (41st) and Sebastien Dockier (53rd) scored the other goals.
Hockey World Cup 2018 highlights, Semifinal 1: Belgium vs England
Alexander Hendrickx (45th, 50th minutes) converted two penalty corners, while Tom Boon (8th), Simon Gougnard (19th), Cedric Charlier (42nd) and Sebastien Dockier (53rd) were the other goal scorers for the world number three at the Kalinga Stadium.
Prior to this, the Red Lions' best performance in the World Cup was a fifth-place finish in the last edition of the tournament at The Hague, Netherlands in 2014.
The Belgium players, who wore black armbands to pay respect to their teammate Gougnard whose father passed away before the match, dominated possession in the first two quarters and created a couple of promising chances, two of which resulted in goals.
It didn't take long for Belgium to take the lead as Boon deflected in Florent van Aubel's measured cross from the left in the eighth minute.
Just seconds from the end of first quarter, Boon again came close but his deflection from a long ball hit the post.
Belgium doubled their lead in the 19th minute through Gougnard, who scored from a rebound after Hendrickx's flick from their first penalty corner was saved by England captain and goalkeeper George Pinner.
The Red Lions missed a sitter three minutes from half time when an unmarked Dockier pushed wide Van Aubel's pass, with only Pinner to beat.
Just a minute after the change of ends, England secured their first penalty corner, but the world number seven failed to capitalise on the opportunity.
Belgium extended their lead in the 42nd minute through Charlier, who scored with a fierce shot from a close range.
Minutes later, England earned another penalty corner but Belgium goalkeeper Vincent Vanasch was up to the task, and thwarted the danger with a fine save.
Seconds from the end of the third quarter, Belgium made it 4-0 when Hendrickx found the back of the English net from his team's second penalty corner.
Belgium continued to toy with the English defence and pumped in two more goals in the fourth and final quarter to make the last-four contest a thoroughly one-sided affair.
Another penalty corner resulted in another goal through Hendrickx, in the 50th minute, before Dockier scored from a field effort three minutes later to complete the rout.
Towards the end of the match, England secured two more penalty corners but lack of execution let them down, as they rounded off a disappointing outing.