Match of the Day was the early one, with 18 goals and end to end entertainment from Germany and England, Sam Ward (ENG) and Mo Fuerste (GER) exchanging scores either end.
GERMANY v ENGLAND 10-8 (4-3)
The first goal of day 2 here in Vienna after 4 minutes was scored by Sam Ward, England’s number 8 after an English PC giving England an early lead. Ward scored again in the 9th minute but Germany was quick on the rebound, with Moritz Fuerste scoring in the 10th minute, which was followed by a super reverse flick from Germany’s no. 5, Constantin Staib (2-2). With a wide open English goal, Moritz Fuerste took advantage, but the lead was short lived as England quickly equalized, courtesy of no. 11 Chris Griffiths (3-3). With four and a half minutes to go in the first half, Germany won a PC and Moritz Fuerste scored his third goal of the match. (4-3) at halftime in a very even and exciting game which had a place in the semi-final at stake.
The second half began with Germany pushing, and Nevado scoring in the 22nd minute. A minute later, a PC for England and a drag flick from Ward, and England were back in the game (5-4). Germany came back quickly and Nevado scored his second goal of the match. A stroke for Germany resulted in no goal as Fuerste shot high over the bar. England kept up the fight and no. 9 Egerton put them closer to a tie with a great pass from Darren Cheesman (6-5). England was awarded a stroke with 10 minutes on the clock as Ward was fouled by the German keeper, but they were unsuccessful (6-5). A PC with 7 minutes to go gives England the equalizer as Ward scores is fourth goal of the game (6-6). A minute later, England took the lead as no. 8 Egerton scored, but the lead was short-lived as Germany quickly responded with a goal by no. 27 Daniel von Drachenfels (7-7).
With four minutes to go, no. 8 Nevado scored as England left their goal empty with the keeper off (8-7). The English response was swift, and with 3 minutes to go, no. 10 Beckett equalised (8-8). As Nevado got sent off with a green card, Moritz Fuerste took advantage of the empty English goal again and put Germany ahead with 2 mFuerste again with seconds to go sealed the result for Germany. Final Result 10-8 in an amazing game as Germany gets a place in the semi-finals and England goes to the relegation pool. Certainly game of the Tournament to date! 10:10.
CZECH REPUBLIC v SWEDEN 7-4 (3-2)
Sweden took the lead with no. 10 Johan Bjorkman scoring the first goal of the match after 6 minutes (0-1). Czech Republic equalized with a goal from no.5 Tomas Prochazka and with 4 minutes to go in the first half, Captain Daniel Piterak gave Czech Republic the lead (2-1). This was short-lived as Sweden quickly equalized with a goal by no.5 Joakim Bjorkman. This quick-fire continued as Czech no. 21 David Vacek got the lead once more. Half time score (3-2)
Second half opened with Sweden coming back with a goal in the 22nd minute by no. 10 Johan Bjorkman, followed by a swift Czech reply by no. 8 Ondrej Vudmaska (4-3). The Czechs took the lead again with a goal in the 30th minute by no. 21 David Vacek (5-3). With 4 and half minutes to go Czech Republic got a stroke and no. 7 Stepan Bernatek scored (6-3). Shortly after, Bernatek consolidated the Czech lead, scoring once more as the Swedish were playing without a keeper (7-3). With less than a minute on the clock, Sweden’s no. 2 Karl Hemvik scores after a PC but it’s not enough as Czech Republic easily takes the match with a final score of 7-4.
RUSSIA v NETHERLANDS 6-4 (4-2)
Russia took an early lead with a goal from no. 10 Alexander Zhirkov in the 5th minute, but that woke The Netherlands up and they quickly responded with two goals, the equaliser by no.8 Mirco Pruijser and the lead by no. 7 Timmo Kranstauber (1-2) both in the 7th minute. Russia would not be intimidated, and equaliser came courtesy of no. 8, Alexander Likov (2-2). With 4 minutes left on the first half, Russia took the lead again with a fantastic strike by no. 8 Alexander Likov (3-2). With seconds on the clock, Russia got a PC and the score at half-time is 4-2 thanks to captain and no. 5 Dmitry Volkov.
In the second half, Russia kept on the pressure and increased their lead with a PC goal from no. Alexander Likov, his third goal of the match (5-2). After a time out, Netherlands comes back with a cracking goal by no. 5 and captain Robert Tigges (5-3). But the celebration were quickly extinguished by Russia who get a PC and no. 8 Alexander Likov scores with a hat trick (6-3). In the last 2 minutes, the Netherlands get a PC and no. 10 Robert Tigges scores again (6-4) but there is simply not enough for Netherlands to go through the semi-finals. Russia take their place in the semis alongside Germany. The Germans taking top slot in the Pool.
POLAND v AUSTRIA 4-4 (3-2)
Poland came out to win as that would have meant they would avoid the Germans in the semi-final, with an early goal by no. 7 Tomasz Gorny (1-0). In the 8th minute, Poland was awarded a stroke and the score was 2-0 thanks to a goal by no. 8, the captain, Dariusz Rachwalski. To the delight of the home crow, Austria brought the score to 2-1, with a goal by no. 22 Dominik Monghy in the 10th minute. Four minutes later, and the equaliser arrived via an Austrian PC, goal from no. 13, Benjamin Stanzl (2-2). But Poland was quick to respond, and no. 10 Marcin Lewartowski brought the lead back to Poland (3-2). In spite of the Austrian press, the halftime score remained 3-2.
As the second half got underway, Poland continued the pressure. In the 25th minute, a PC gave them the opportunity and no. 22 Karol Majchrzak took it to give Poland a two goal lead (4-2). But Austria quickly responded, and in a PC of their own and no. 9 Michal Karper narrowed the Polish lead (4-3). In the 30th minute, no.5 Sebastian Eiternberger gave Austria the equaliser (4-4). The draw ensured both teams went through to the semi-finals.
Line-up for this afternoon:
4A England – Sweden 4B
3A Netherlands – Czech Republic 3B
2A Russia – Austria 1B
1A Germany – Poland 2B
Photographs: Norbert Gruner/EHF (c)