Nordic World Ski Championships – German poker in team jumping goes wrong: Eisenbichler and Co. are frustrated after fifth place

Markus Eisenbichler scolded like a sparrow and sought consolation from his friend Andrea. After a failed poker game by national coach Stefan Horngacher, the frustration of the former ski jumping world champion had to be vented.

“Shit,” Eisenbichler roared, referring primarily to the missed medal in the team competition at the World Championships in Planica. Gold went to hosts Slovenia ahead of Norway and Austria.

The reason for the frustration was 50 centimeters missing: Horngacher had the inrun for Eisenbichler shortened by two hatches at the beginning of the second round.

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The six-time world champion had to jump 131.0 m to get the bonus points – and landed at 130.5 m. As a result, the DSV quartet with Eisenbichler, Constantin Schmid, Andreas Wellinger and Karl Geiger fell back to fifth place. It also ended the competition there.

Schmitt analysis of team jumping: DSV-Adler with “too many ‘mistakes'”

“We calculated it beforehand and said: If we want a medal, we have to take a risk,” said Horngacher on “ARD”: “We trusted Markus. That half a meter is not enough, we have to take that risk take like that.” In retrospect, however, it became clear that even with the ten bonus points it would have been “only” enough for fourth place instead of fifth.

Eisenbichler was still angry. “I’m brutally tied up,” said the 31-year-old: “We were able to compete here and were close to the medals. It’s annoying when you gamble something away.”

Eisenbichler: “It wasn’t agreed with me”

At Eurosport the six-time world champion said during the competition: “I made a good jump. But I didn’t understand why there were two gates. Kamil (Stoch, Anm. d. Ed.) jumped 135 meters with one gate less. Two gates are hard. From my feeling it was 131.5 meters. It was over the line.”

“It wasn’t agreed with me either, that’s a bit of a shame, but I trust the coaches,” he explained on “ARD”.

Strong jump in the final: Geiger brings the team competition to a worthy end

DSV sports director Horst Hüttel defended the decision. “From a sporting point of view, you can understand that completely. It was all a bit unfortunate today. Nevertheless, we are going out of the competition with our heads held high,” said Hüttel.

Also Eurosport expert Martin Schmitt defended Horngacher. “In the second round it was an ‘all or nothing’ game for Stefan Horngacher,” explained the team’s Olympic champion from 2002: “He said to himself: ‘Ok, I’ll go down with the hatch now and maybe we can do a crazy jump make up points again and attack. But that didn’t work out and you have to check that off.”

Schmitt: “All in all, maybe too many ‘mistakes'”

From his point of view, this was not the decisive scene of the evening. “There wasn’t one key moment. All in all, perhaps too many ‘mistakes’ were made. It could have been a bit better start with the Eisei. Constantin Schmid should have hit the edge twice,” Schmitt pointed out after the competition that it was overall things didn’t go so well for the German team on Saturday.

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In view of the high-class competition, the 45-year-old doesn’t see the placement as dramatic. “In the field of five, you can see it in the Poles, you don’t have to be ashamed if you don’t win a medal. That’s often how it is on the day,” explained Schmitt.

Team gold for Slovenia! Lanisek shakes Planica

Meanwhile, hosts Slovenia won the first team gold in their World Cup history. Timi Zajc, who had already won gold in singles on Friday, Lovro Kos, Ziga Jelar and Anze Lanisek made the thousands of fans cheer. Slovenia had never climbed above third place (2011 and 2015).

Right from the start, a thriller developed in the valley of the hills, in which five nations played the leading roles. After the first jumps of Eisenbichler (137.0 m) and Schmid (133.0 m) Germany was in fifth place, just behind the top. Wellinger (126.5) brought the DSV quartet to fourth place for the first time, which Geiger (136.0) defended at half-time.

Wellinger with a positive World Cup conclusion: “Really cool overall”

Then Horngacher took full risk and the medal went out of reach. After gold in the mixed event and silver and bronze from Wellinger and Geiger on the normal hill, the Austrian was still satisfied with the World Championships overall. “We showed Ski Jumping Germany that we still exist,” said Horngacher.

Wellinger made a similar statement. “All in all, it was really cool. Going home with two medals, that’s a pretty good conclusion,” said the 2018 Olympic champion, who got back on track just in time for the World Cup: “But fifth place at the end – that annoys us.”

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