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India lose 0-2 to Germany to remain winless in pool stages

Press Trust of India  |  Bhubaneswar 

produced a lacklustre and disappointing performance in their second consecutive match to go down 0-2 to and end their pool engagements on a winless note at the Hockey World League (Final), here today. Bhubaneswar crowd had to return home disappointed once again as scored two goals in the second quarter through skipper Martin Haner (17th minute) and Mats Grambusch (20th) to hand their second defeat of the eight-nation tournament. India, who drew 1-1 with and lost 2-3 against in their previous outings, thus finished at the bottom of Pool B table with just one point from three matches. Earlier in the day, world champions and played out a 2-2 draw in their final pool engagements. Dylan Wootherspoon (33rd minute) and Blake Govers (42st) scored for Australia, while Liam Ansell (4th) and Phil Roper (54th) found the net for Having finished at the bottom, will now play the leaders of Pool A in the quarterfinals on Wednesday, while Pool B's top-placed (7 points) will take on the last team of Pool A. Pool A standings will be decided tomorrow after the final round matches between Argentina-Spain and Belgium-Netherlands. The Germans came out strong in the first quarter, dominating the early share of exchanges. The Indians, however, got their foothold as the quarter progressed.

Both the teams tried hard but failed to produce any real goal scoring opportunities. But the deadlock broke just after the start of second quarter from Germany's first penalty corner. The Germans kept up the pressure on the Indian defence and secured the first penalty corner of match, which Hanner converted with a ground flick to the right of a diving Akash Chikte in front of the Indian goal. To the utter disbelief of the capacity crowd present at the Kalinga Stadium, the Germans extended their lead minutes later through Gramhbusch, whose strike from the circle beat Chikte after a deflection from Birendra Lakra stick. Stunned by two goals, the hosts finally showed some promise and created a few good chances but failed to get past custodian Tobias Walter, who was brilliant under the post. Walter denied Mandeep Singh from a counter attack and then from the resultant move Akashdeep Singh's reverse went inches wide of the goal. The German goalkeeper made three brilliant saves in the final three minutes of the second quarter. An agile Walter made a double save to deny Gurjant Singh twice, first blocking his shot and then keeping out a sharp deflection from the striker with his extended arms. The Indians earned their first penalty corner in the next minute after going for a referral but Walter came to his side's rescue again as he kept away Rupinderpal Singh's flick. went into the breather leading 2-0. Soon after the change of ends, secured a penalty corner but it was later disallowed by the video umpire after went for referral. The Indians had a close shave minutes later when the ball struck the post and went out after India's second choice goalkeeper Suraj Karkera did just enough to keep out Germany's second set piece. then got their second penalty corner but this time Harmanpreet Singh disappointed. Penalty corner conversions continued to haunt the Indians as they wasted two more set pieces in the final seconds of the match to sum up their disastrous pool showing.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, December 04 2017. 21:30 IST