India bite dust against fancied Korea in handball

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Hyderabad, Oct 15 (UNI) India went down fighting to formidable South Korea 29-40 in their second league match of the men's handball competition at the 4th Military World Games here today.

The hosts, who drew with Turkey 30-30 in their first Group A match, gave a valiant fight but the difference in class showed that they had to play a chasing game throughout the match against their opponents who are among top four in the last three World Military Handball Championships.

The nippy Koreans exchanged the ball in lightning speed and never allowed the Indians to narrow down the gap in score line which kept on increasing till it was a 10 goal difference at 13-23 at the half time.

The Indian militarymen, who had at least two international players in their ranks, did not lack in their efforts in front of large home supporters at Saroornagar Stadium but could not match the Korean sharp shooting and solid defence.

The only time when India brought down the gap was towards the close of the match when the score line read 27-34 but the Koreans replied with some spectacular goals to pocket the 60-minute match at 40-29.

Today's defeat would mean that India will have to come out something extraordinary in Wednesday's match against Greece, who are also no pushovers having finished among top six in the World Championships in 2001 and 2002.

India play their last group match against Lithuania -- another strong side -- on October 18. Two teams from each of the two groups will advance to the semi-finals.

Greece, India, South Korea, Lithuania and Turkey made up Group A while Group B has Belarus, Latvia, Qatar and United Arab Emirates.


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