Germany win hockey World Cup for first time in 17 years

Monday, 30 January 2023 (11:29 IST)
Germany's World Cup glory in India will go down as one of the most incredible run of comeback wins in sports. Germany beat defending champions Belgium 5-4 on penalties after the game ended 3-3.
Two goals down, Germany roused themselves to surge into a 3-2 lead only for a last-minute equalizer from Belgium to send the final to a shoot-out. But Germany, perhaps accustomed to the pressure given all that had happened until that point, stayed calm and won the shoot 5-4 after keeper Jean-Paul Danneberg made three saves.
"The last few weeks have been the best of my life," said Niklas Wellen, who scored in the final. Wellen also became a father during the tournament. "The win today is just incredible. I'm speechless."
The triumph is a fairytale finish to a dramatic tournament for Germany. Having finished second to Belgium in the pool stages, Germany eased past France to make the quarterfinals. Two goals in the final two minutes against England took Germany to a penalty shoot-out, which they won to set up a semifinal against Australia.
Again, Germany clawed their way back from 2-0 down to go level but when Australia scored with two minutes left the run looked to be over. Extraordinarily, Germany scored two goals inside the final minute to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat and leave Australia stunned.
In the final, more drama felt inevitable and duly followed. Five years ago, it was Belgium who held the trophy aloft, beating Germany in the quarterfinals. This time, it was Germany's turn as they kept their heads and secured their third World Cup title after glory in 2002 and 2006.

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