The Indian junior men’s hockey team went down 2-3 against the hosts Germany at the Four Nations Tournament in Dusseldorf on Saturday.

Sudeep Chirmako (7’, 60’) scored a brace for India while Michel Struthoff (41’), Ben Hasbach (53’), and Florian Sperling (55’) were on target for Germany.

Entering the match fresh off a 6-2 victory over Spain, India jumped out to an early lead against the hosts. Chirmako struck the back of the nets to give India the lead in the seventh minute of the match. Despite Germany’s attempt to cover the deficit, India managed to maintain their lead by the end of the first quarter.

While Germany searched for the equaliser in the second quarter, India too showed their intent to find another goal to consolidate their lead. But both teams defended well and India went into half-time maintaining their 1-0 lead.

The second half started with Germany showing urgency to get their opening goal of the match, but India managed to defend well. Struthoff broke India’s resistance in the 41st minute and struck the ball into the back of the nets to level proceedings.

With 15 minutes left on the clock and the scores levelled, both India and Germany started injecting pace in their attacks to find the winner. In the 53rd minute, Hasbach put Germany ahead, scoring the second goal for his side and two minutes later, Sperling further extended Germany’s lead, scoring the third goal. Chirmako scored a late goal at the stroke of full time, but Germany managed to win the match 3-2.

The Indian team next takes on England, on August 21, at 1.30 pm IST.