ISLAMABAD - Defending Olympic champions Germany taught a hockey lesson to the world hockey champions Australia in the semi-finals to book their birth in the final and set a fate with Netherlands for the golden match.
The German victory was made possible by their outstanding goalkeeper Weinhol Max who was in sublime form in front of the goal post; he at least save a dozen of Aussies attacks and kept them at bay. Weinhol saved some brilliantly taken short corners and denied Kangaroos from scoring on plenty corners, although he conceded two goals, yet it was solely because of his match-winning performance that saved the day for his team.
Aussies despite twice taking the lead never looked like securing the match in their favour as Germans were always there. They never sit back and continued to press for equalizer, which they managed to do so. Germans remained unlucky not to be awarded a clear-cut goal when they were down 2-1. England referee, after awarding the goal in Germans favour, had a change of heart and review the decision and to the much of surprise the goal was disallowed. Despite Germans rightfully protested that was the turning point of the match as from that point it was one way traffic as Germans not only level the match 2-2 but went on to score two further goals which proved to be the final nail in Australians coffin as Aussies remained unable to score further and were beaten convincingly.
The way Germans play against the world champions gave a clear message to Pakistan hockey team who were demolished by the Australians in the last group match 7-0, thus ending all hopes of green shirts of reaching last four which would have at least given a hope of earning bronze medal after Barcelona Olympics where Pakistan last managed to win a medal.
Pakistan selectors played a gamble and picked old horses like Sohail Abbas, Wassem Ahmed, Shakil Abbasi and Rehan Butt. Rehan and Waseem scored for the green shirts but Sohail Abbas was a complete flop as far his conversion of short corners was concerned.
M Imran, the other short corner specialist, played far better then the skipper and his conversion rate is a proof of his abilities. Sohail doesn't even deserve a place in the squad but the selectors not only opted in his favour but also continued him as captain of the national side.
Shakeel Abbasi flopped miserably in front of the goal as he failed to score even a single goal in the six matches he played. The PHF had played a big gamble by selecting Shakeel, Rehan and Waseem despite these three taking part in the banned WHS league in India, a move which badly reverted.
The worst case of the PHF nepotism was the selection of goalkeeper Imran Shah, who was the major factor behind green shirts poor showing in the entire tournament. Imran conceded 18 goals in six matches he played; by far the worst performance of any goalkeeper in the golden hockey history of Pakistan, a country which had produced world class goalies in almost all the eras and such goalies played key role in all the major clashes.  Prime Minister must appoint a disciplinary committee and especially punish the mastermind who brought such a bad name for the country by selecting Imran instead of premier goalkeeper Salman Akbar who was instrumental in helping green shirts winning gold medal in Asian Games after a gap of two decades.
After sensational performance against Australia, Germans are firm favorites to retain their Olympic hockey gold against Holland who thrashed hosts Great Britain in the second semifinal 9-2 to stun the pack to capacity home crowd and raced n to the final. It is true Germans were beaten by the same opponents in the group match but final is totally a different prospect. Germans would be roaring to go and take sweet revenge which they are fully capable of doing so, as they are fighters by nature and really a tough net to crack. If we closely look at the things, Germans are better placed to retain the Olympic hockey title.