Czechs win Ice Hockey crown, Germany fails to clinch bronze | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 23.05.2010
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Czechs win Ice Hockey crown, Germany fails to clinch bronze

The Czech Republic are crowned Ice Hockey World Champions after dethroning Russia and ending their 27-match winning streak. Earlier Germany fell to Sweden in Sunday's bronze medal match in a hard-fought play-off match.

Czechs dethrone Russia to win world title

Czechs dethrone Russia to win world title

The Czech Republic won the World Ice Hockey Championship in Cologne, Germany, beating defending champions Russia 2-1 in Sunday's final.

Undefeated since 2007, Russia had been looking for their third successive championship title. But it was the Czechs who got off to a flying start, scoring just 20 seconds into the match through Klepis, who fired on an unguarded post.

The Russian side piled on the pressure but the Czech defense remained tight. A goal for Russia was disallowed at the end of the first period.

In the second period the Czech Republic scored a second goal when Karel Rachunek passed to Tomas Rolinek in the Russian zone to clinch the winner a minute before the end of the second period.

Russia struck back in the final period, netting a power play goal with just 36 seconds remaining on the clock, but it was not enough to deny the Czechs the deserved world title.

"We're obviously upset," said Russian skipper Ilya Kovalchuk, who was the competition's top points scorer with 12 from two goals and 10 assists. "We can't accept any other place than first. We're deeply disappointed."

Germany's team battled hard, but Sweden retained the edge

Germany's team battled hard, but Sweden retained the edge

Germany take fourth place

Earlier Germany missed out on the chance to clinch a bronze medal at the World Ice Hockey Championship in Cologne on Sunday, succumbing to a 3-1 defeat by Sweden.

Despite German efforts to level the scores, Sweden remained in control throughout the game.

Swedish striker Magnus Paajarvi Svensson netted his fifth goal of the tournament, putting the puck past German goalkeeper Dinnis Endras some three minutes into the match.

For Germany, playing in front of a 15,900 crowd at Cologne's Lanxess Arena, it was a chance to win the country's first championship medal in more than 50 years.

The Swedes remained dominant into the second period but it was German forward Alexander Bartas who was next to score, firing in a rebound under the crossbar to equalize.

However, Sweden moved into the lead once again as Jonas Andersson beat Endras with a sharp-angled shot between the pads.

Gamble fails to pay off

German ice hockey coach Uwe Krupp

Despite outward appearances, Coach Krupp was pleased with his team's effort

German coach Uwe Krupp substituted Endras for a sixth field player with one minute remaining in a bid to equalize once again. The gamble failed and Andersson fired his sixth goal of the tournament into an empty net.

Krupp said he would take some time to think about a possible contract extension as coach of the German team. He also praised his players.

"The strength that we needed was no longer there. One goal is not enough to win, but the team has played superbly in the tournament," he said.

Editor: Martin Kuebler

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