|March 9th, 2008|
|17||Final 3-4||3:30pm||AUT - RUS||3 - 6 (1 - 4)||Final|
Russia started slowly in this competition, allegedly because they were called at the last minute after the withdrawal of Bangladesh and had just finished their indoor season. After two clean defeats at the hands of India (0-8) and Great Britain (0-8), they picked up speed, giving a hard time to Austria in the pool game (4-5) then winning against Chile and Mexico. Austria on the other hand started extremely well, shocking host Chile on opening day (4-3) but seemed to fade over the week.
The momentum was in favor of Russia at the beginning of this final game, and they were quickly up by two goals, first by Alexander PLATONOV (in the first minute of play!) then by Dmitry AZAROV on penalty-stroke. This took some wind out the Austrian’s sails, and they struggled to come back in the game. They only closed the gap in the 18th minute, when Peter PROKSCH was at the conclusion of some good work by Fabian RINGLER. But their come-back was short lived, Alexander PLATONOV adding two more goals to his tally to complete a hat-trick before half-time, reached on the score of 4-1.
Austria tried hard to come back early in second period, but only managed to pull back one goal by Robert BUCHTA in the 49th minute before Alexander KOROLEV and Alexander PLATONOV widened the gap again. With a 4-goal difference and the afternoon heat, the intensity of the game declined and Russia could celebrate a final win (6-3) that reversed the result of the pool game, gave them the third place of the competition and showed that they are much better than their low World Ranking of 45th.