Iceland confirm main round spot with a clear win over Korea

16 Jan. 2023

Iceland confirm main round spot with a clear win over Korea

Iceland cruised past the Republic of Korea with Óðinn Þór Ríkharðsson's 11-goal outing and secured their second win at the World Championship, confirming their main round spot. Even though Iceland were the clear favourite, both sides wanted to produce their best performance in order to end the time spent in Kristianstad with a positive thought.

Group D

Republic of Korea vs Iceland 25:38 (13:19)

Iceland! Iceland! Fans were chanting from both sides of the stands from the first minute of the match and long after the final whistle, showing they are supporting their team through everything.

Two equal halves in Kristianstad delivered a clear Icelandic win over the winless Republic of Korea. Korea were the first ones to score, but in later they did not have enough strength to break Iceland's defence.

Even when they managed to do it, Viktor GĂ­sli HallgrĂ­msson got in their way. HallgrĂ­msson got his chance to start between the posts, and at 6:1 he already had three saves out of five attempts. In the end? Astonishing 17 saves at a 41% save efficiency.

The Asian side had to wait for eight minutes and a penalty shot to get to their second goal of the day, just like they scored the third one from the same position. During that time, Iceland were efficient in fast breaks as right wing Óðinn Þór Ríkharðsson was precise and scored his fourth goal for 8:3.

It took 13 minutes for Korea to score the first goal in the match as Yeonbin Kim aimed the bottom right of the Icelandic goal. Korea were not as agile and speedy compared to the first two matches and the Icelandic attack made them even more tired.

Five turnovers and four saves by Chang-woo Lee stopped Iceland from widening the gap and kept Korea in a five-goal range. Iceland managed to go into the break with a six-goal lead courtesy of RĂ­kharĂ°sson's goal with the buzzer. Kadetten Schaffhausen's right wing got his first minutes at this World Championship and took advantage of it, netting eight times in the first half alone.

GuĂ°mundur GuĂ°mundsson decided to rest Ómar Ingi MagnĂșsson and Sigvaldi BjĂžrn GuĂ°jĂłnsson in this match as Iceland were cruising towards a win. As the clock hit the 40-minute mark, Arnar Freyr Arnarsson netted for the first double-digit lead (27:17).

The score stretched out to 35:20 as more and more players were getting their first minute on the court. The trio ViggĂł KristjĂĄnsson, Bjarki MĂĄr ElĂ­sson and RĂ­kharĂ°sson netted 25 out of 38 Icelandic goals.

On the Korean side, all the players were giving the last drop of sweat against a much stronger opponent, with team captain Jeong-gu Kang and Yeon-bin Kim leading the way with four goals. And Seung Park scored his third for the final score (25:38).

Iceland continue their path in the main round Group II in Gothenburg with two points taken, while Korea will play in President's Cup I in Plock.

hummel Player of the Match: Viktor GĂ­sli HallgrĂ­msson (Iceland)