Czech team defeated Korea and qualified to the Paralympics!!!

Dream came true. Czech sledge hockey national team handled the match of the year – at the World championship they defeated Korea and qualified to the Winter Paralympic Games in Vancouver 2010. Czech national team was like an another team. Soon after the beginning they took a lead thanks to Berger´s half-ice incredible goal. Korea then tied the game but Zelenka´s team performed their own game what was an excellent choice. Next two goals added by Hábl, then Kubeš and Geier one a piece. Czech Republic won 5:1 and on Friday will compete for the fifth place with Italy.

      |   13.5.2009, Ondřej Kubát
MSF2, Wednesday 13.5.2009
Korea - Czech republic  1:5  (0:1, 1:1, 0:3)
Goals and assists: 26. B. S. Cho (Y. M. Lee) - 11. Berger, 29. Hábl (Geier), 31. Hábl (Geier), 35. Kubeš (Krupička), 44. Geier. Referee: Boese - Roethlisberger, Heltman. Penalties: 2:4. Spectators: 1150. Shoots on goal: 14:27.
Korea: Hyuk Jun Choi (od 38. Young Hoon Jung) - Yong Min Lee, Young Jae Cho, Jong Kyung Lee, Woo Chul Park - Byeong Seok Cho, Seung Hwan Jung, Jong Ho Jang, Sang Hyun Park, Min Su Han, Hae Man Lee, Jae Hwa Hong, Dae Jung Kim, Seong Keun Se.
Czech republic: Vápenka - Hrbek, Kvoch, Kubeš, Klíma - Berger (C), Fojtík (A), Geier - Hábl, Krupička, Šafránek - Palát, Raul.
» Game sheet (PDF)
» Game report (PDF)


Match for everything. That was the match of Czech Republic and Korea. Both teams fought for qualifying to the Paralympics in Vancouver. From the beginning of game Czech players were more active, created more scoring opportunities but they were not very precise in shooting. Krupička had the biggest shooting opportunity at eight minute who went alone to the Cho but did not overcome him.

But still in the first period Czech team scored and it was exactly such shot which they needed. Jiří Berger shot from the red line and Korean goalkeeper Cho slashed puck into the cage – 0:1. Berger scored for the second time one moment later but Berger passed to him with his hand so goal was not valid.

In the second period Korea tied the game. Czech team started to be active and this activity grew up at the beginning of twentieth minute with Krupička´s goal. But referee didn´t accept this goal again because Berger had passed with his hand before. Seung Hwan Jung went then alone to the Czech goalkeeper but Michal Vápenka performed great action.

Five minutes before the end of second period Korea tied the score. Short handed Czech defenders went with no sense to attack Korean pass what meant “power-play” in front of Vápenka´s cage. Beyong Seok Cho utilized the situation best and sent twice blocked shot from the right pole to the net – 1:1.

Czechs did not give it up and they replied with one more goal. Geier from behind the cage passed to absolutely free Zdeněk Hábl who finally scored – 1:2.

Czech team heightened their lead just at the beginning of the third period. Zdeněk Hábl caught Geier´s pass and scored into the half-opened cage. Team in red jerseys became euphoric and instantly added fourth goal. Krupička conquered the puck behind the cage and Pavel Kubeš scored – 1:4.

Korea swapped goalkeepers and tried to make the match more difficult at least. But also they gave the scoring chance for Šafránek who unfortunately did not use it. Two minutes before the end of match while short-handed Michal Geier escaped from defenders and scored again – 5:1.

Czech team won the key match of the whole championship up and for the first time in a history they qualified for the Paralympic games. Immediately after end of the match they could start with celebrations.

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