FIH Men’s Hockey Junior World Cup 2023: India beat Germany 4-1 in semi-final

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where the 13th edition of the Hockey Junior World Cup is in full swing. Sixteen nations, each brimming with raw talent and burning ambition, have come together in a battle for the coveted title. From the speed of the forwards to the acrobatic saves of the goalkeepers, every match is a symphony of skill, determination, and sheer passion for the game.

India’s quest for a title at the FIH Men’s Hockey Junior World Cup 2023 ended with a 4-1 defeat to six-time champions Germany in the semi-finals at the National Hockey Stadium in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Thursday.

All eyes were on the semi-final clash between Germany and India, two hockey powerhouses with a storied rivalry. The Germans, six-time champions, entered the match with their trademark precision and strategy. India, the two-time champions, fought their mood for improvement and attacking intensity.

Sudeep Charmaku (11′) equalized for two-time FIH Hockey Junior World Cup champions India in the first quarter after Ben Hasbach (8′, 30′) put Germany in front. However, the Indian men’s hockey team’s failure to convert 12 penalty corners proved decisive as second-half goals from Paul Glander (41”) and Florian Sperling (58”) sent Germany to their ninth final in 13 editions. Delivered.

The tension was palpable from the first whistle. The ball zips across the turf like a pinball, each fighting their own battle of wills, each goal a desperate bid for glory. Germany struck first, their clinical passing and effective penalty corner conversions putting them ahead. India responded with unflinching aplomb, their forwards ghosting through the German defense.

Hockey Junior World Cup 2023: India beat Germany 4-1 in semi-final

World No. 3 India started the match well and conceded two penalty corners within the first four minutes. However, it was the second-placed German team that drew first blood with Ben Hassbach’s field goal in the eighth minute. India was quick to respond thanks to another field goal by Sudeep Charmaku in the 11th minute.

The second trimester proved to be a neck-and-neck affair. India had several chances through penalty corners but failed to convert any of them into goals. Germany was awarded their first penalty corner of the match in the dying minutes of the second quarter and made the most of it as Ben Hasbach scored his second goal.

India started the third quarter on the front foot and was rewarded for their aggressive approach as they won their 11th penalty corner with six minutes remaining in the third quarter but Germany managed to hold them back. Paul Glander extended Germany’s lead four minutes into the third quarter by scoring Germany’s second penalty corner.

The Indians attacked in numbers in the last quarter but were unable to penetrate the German defense. India found hope in the form of two back-to-back penalty corners with less than 10 minutes to play but neither converted as the German defenders proved tough.

With India’s defense exposed looking for a response, Florian Sperling scored Germany’s fourth goal with just minutes left on the clock to confirm their place in the final as India went on to lose the game 4-1. did

Earlier in the campaign, the Indian hockey junior world cup team finished second in their group after losing 4–1 to Spain but qualified for the quarterfinals with 10–1 wins over Canada and 4–2 over the Korean Republic. They beat the Netherlands 4-3 in the quarter-finals.

India won the FIH Men’s Hockey Junior World Cup titles in 2001 and 2016. In the previous edition in 2021, they finished fourth after losing to France in the bronze medal match.

In the end, Germany triumphed with a scoreline of 4–1, booking their place in the final.

India Hockey Junior World Cup will play the loser of the other semi-final — France or Spain — for third place on Saturday.

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