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Host China loses 5-2 to South Korea in men's hockey
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15:09, August 13, 2008

Host China played an intense game with South Korea but was finally defeated 5-2 in the Olympic men's hockey tournament on Wednesday.

Since South Korea went down 3-1 to New Zealand and China lost 4-1 to Germany in their first game, it was a must-win game for both teams and they fought a really hard duel.

Na Yubo scored the opening field goal in the sixth minute and captain Song Yi added a second by a penalty corner two minutes later and put China 2-0 ahead.

Captain Seo Jong Ho scored a field goal for South Korea in the 13th minute and Jang Jong Hyun leveled the score 2-2 with a penalty corner at the last second of the first half.

The second half went even tighter. However, in the last 15 minutes, South Korea gained the upper hand and scored three goals, two penalty corners from Jang Jong Hyun and the other field goal from Kang Seong Jung, which sealed their win 5-2 over China.

Chinese players, debutants in Olympic hockey tournament, failed to make a strong showing in front of a loud crowd in the home land.

South Korea, ranked fifth in the world, won both encounters with China at the 2006 Asian Games, 3-1 in the final and 3-0 in the preliminary round.

Captain Song Yi said they made some major mistakes in the second half. "We have no problem in tactics, but we didn't carry out the tactics well and were somewhat slow in playing," he said, adding that they should not have lost the game and were feeling very bad.

The hat-trick player Jang Jong Hyun said they succeeded because of teamwork.

China coach Kim Sang Ryul noted he was not happy with their performance today because of the bad coordination. "I told them my plan before the game, but I think there was some misunderstanding. So in the midfield and shooting circle there were some mistakes," said Kim. "And Korea is a strong team."

China will confront Spain next and South Korea take on Germany.

In another Wednesday morning match, world champion Australia whitewashed South Africa 10-0 following its 6-1 win against Canada on Monday.

Source:Xinhua

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1 China 14 3 5 22
2 USA 9 8 9 26
3 South Korea 5 6 1 12
5 Italy 4 4 2 10
4 Australia 4 2 6 12
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