Bhubaneswar: India lost 2-4 to Germany in the semifinal of the Junior Hockey World Cup at Kalinga Stadium here on Friday.
Germany completely dominated the game, especially the first two quarters where they scored at will and were leading 4-1.
The third and the fourth quarter almost went goalless as the six-time champion side dropped the anchor which allowed India to push, but could not do much even after finding their men in the box.
It was the poor display of defence by India in the first two quarters that decided the outcome of the match. Their defence was all over the place, though they were fantastic in the quarterfinal match against Belgium, which they won 1-0.
Sanjay, Araijeet Hundal, Uttam Singh, Shardanand Tiwai, Captain Vivek Sagar Prasad, Maninder Singh, Abhishek Lakra – all of them horribly failed to come up with something special in the game.
With this win, Germany will now meet Argentina in the final, while India will face France for third place on Sunday.
Germany got sight of a big opportunity in the 4th minute on the reverse with the goalkeeper out of his line, but the striker missed with his shot. The visitors then pressed on with more attacks and earned the first penalty corner of the match, but the shot went wide off the goalpost. Before this, Max Siegburg squandered the best chance in the early stages for Germany.
Just at the stroke of the first quarter, Germany earned another penalty corner, which Erik Kleinlein converted into an innovative routine. Straight at the other end, India looked to respond instantly and earned their first penalty corner just 5 seconds before the hooter. The attack was averted and Germany was 1-0 at the end of. of Q1.
Germany scored the second goal in the 20th minute through Holzmueller.
In the 24th minute, Germany made it 3-0, making an uphill task for India, but within a minute of conceding their third goal, Uttam Singh got the vital touch, making it 3-1 for India after a few rapid minutes.
Soon after, the rivals spoiled India’s celebrations by earning a penalty stroke and restoring their three-goal lead.
In the 43rd minute of Q3, India got closer to the German goal by creating chances. Sanjay drilled a long pass forward in hope of a deflection, but Uttam was not around to flick it in. The German goalkeeper Brinckman denied India a shot on goal.
Manjeet missed a golden chance for India as he failed to connect with the German keeper at his mercy just at the stroke of Q3.
In Q4, Germany created chances to increase its lead even further. They got a penalty corner in the 52nd minute, but could not convert it, with a drag flick of Phandt was saved by India’s goalkeeper Pawan.
With just five minutes left, India drove forward. Into the last minute, a fantastic drive into the far top corner by Boby Singh Dhami to fetch India their second goal, but it was too late for the defending champions.