Germany registered an impressive 7-2 win over South Korea but they failed to get a direct entry to the quarterfinals of the FIH Odisha Hockey Men's World Cup 2023 at the Birsa Munda International Hockey Stadium, here on Friday.
After this result, Germany will now head to the crossovers from Pool B along with South Korea. In the final game of the day, which was also the last game of the pool stages, Germany needed a win by 9 goals to overtake Belgium in the Pool B standings and claim direct entry into the quarterfinals, but against an in-from South Korea team it proved to be too big a mountain to climb for the Honamas.
Germany did start the game brightly, scoring in the second minute of the game, through Niklas Wellen, but by the end of the first quarter Korea had pulled a goal back to keep the scores level.
Wellen, who is in red-hot scoring form, gave Germany their lead back before their half-time, but with just a 1-goal lead halfway through the game, German hopes of topping the group were rapidly fading.
The second half started frantically as both teams traded end to end counter-attacks. Korea had the best chance in the 32nd minute with Junwoo Jeong finding shooting space in the German circle, but his venomous hit sailed inches over the goal.
Wellen increased the German lead completing his hat-trick in 41st minute and Gonzalo Peillat added another for the Honamas in the 43rd minute from their 6th penalty corner of the day.
The 4th quarter saw Germany overrun Korea in attack, scoring thrice in the first 7 minutes, but Korea retreated into their defence as German attempts at overtaking Belgium fell narrowly short.
Korea added a second goal in the final minute as they won a penalty corner while the Germans had subbed their keeper out for an outfield player. Hat-trick hero Niklas Wellen was awarded player of the match.
"We knew how many goals we needed to finish top of the group, and we fell short by a couple of goals, but 2 wins and a draw from the three pool stage matches is a very good result for us on the whole," Wellen said.