|April 28th, 2012|
|6||Pool A||3:00pm||JPN - AUT||4 - 1 (2 - 0)||Final|
Japan 4, Austria 1
Host Japan joined South Africa and China as the three co-leaders of the Men’s Olympic Qualification Tournament after earning its second win in as many games with a 4-1 win against Austria. The loss leaves Austria looking for its first win and on the brink of elimination from contention for a place in the final.
Austria was lucky to escape the first half with just a 2-0 deficit as the Japanese applied extraordinary pressure. Austrian goalkeeper Michale Manthler was kept busy in net and made an amazing save just as time expired to keep things close at the break. Japan also hit the post during the half and had several other near misses.
The two goals that did go in during the first 35 minutes was a penalty corner marker by Katsuyoshi Nagasawa and a thrifty chip in from Toshiro Tachibana.
Austria had a more settled second half and Japan found itself with fewer scoring chances. Hiroki Sakamoto got things started with his solid shot five minutes into the half but after the initial strike, Japan was held scoreless for more than 20 minutes. Austria had one glimmer of hope when Michael Korper put in the lone Austrian goal of the game, but Japan put in one last goal to restore the three-goal lead and bring the final to 4-1.
Austria will play a key game against the Czech Republic on Monday. Basically the winner of that will keep a slim chance alive of making it to London. Japan will look to stay unbeaten with its game against Brazil.