Germany in 18th place at 7-a-side World Cup in South Africa


PHilipp Gleitze ran off. 40 meters to go. In full sprint he picked up the ball. He kept running. Ten more meters. five more Not much was missing and the German rugby international would have decided the game with the last stoppage-time action. Five yards to try to win the first World Cup game against Chile, until the round of 16 against South Africa. Instead, a Chilean defender flew in from behind, grabbed Gleitze's legs and brought him down. No try. Renewal. And there defeat by a kick through the bars.

Rugby 7s is a fast-paced sport. A sport with turns every second. Above all, it is a sport where very small moments can have very big consequences. As was the case with Germany's first appearance at the World Cup, where the missed victory on Friday in the knockout match with Chile meant that the German team did not play the hosts in a fiery atmosphere on the same evening. Instead: consolation round. The tournament of the first round losers for 17th place. Early on Saturday morning the first match of the day was against Portugal. Only a few hundred spectators had already entered the imposing arena of Cape Town lost.

Rugby 7s is a brutal sport. And that doesn't even mean the physical toughness in competition. The old saying about hooligan sports played by gentlemen also applies here. But it is always painful to experience how mercilessly mistakes are punished in this Olympic rugby variant.

Especially at the World Cup, where every single match is a knockout game. The Germans had a relatively comfortable 12-0 lead against Chile at half-time, but then went about their work twice with over-motivation. Two time penalties were the result. Two men outnumbered for less than two minutes. With seven against seven and only seven minutes per half, that can hardly be compensated for. The momentum changed and Chile saved themselves in overtime.



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