Game 18 (M): 10:50, Group C, JAPAN 7 CROATIA 1

Quarters: 1-6, 1-3, 2-4, 3-5

Referees: NI Shi Wei (CHN), Alan BALFANBAYEV (KAZ)

Extra Man: JPN: 3/9. CRO: 5/12

Pens: CRO: 1/1

JAPAN: Katsuyuki TANAMURA, Kan AOYAGI, Koji TAKEI (2), Shota HAZUI, Mitsuaki SHIGA, Akira YANASE (2), Yisuke SHIMIZU (2), Atsushi NAGANUMA (1), Hiroki WAKAMATSU, Yoshinori SHIOTA, Keigo OKAWA, Satoshi NAGATA, Naoki SHIMIZU. Head Coach: Hideki TAKAGI.
CROATIA: Josip PAVIC, Damir BURIC (2), Miho BOSKOVIC (2) Niksa DOBUD, Maro JOKOVIC (3), Petar MUSLIM (2), Frano KARAC (1), Andro BUSLJE, Sandro SUKNO (1), Samir BARAC (1), Fran PASKVALIN (2), Paulo OBRADOVIC (2), Ivan BULJUBASIC (2). Coach: Ratko RUDIC.

Croatia is in the form that shows its capable of maintaining its medal-winning run of the past two championships. However, Croatia did take Japan lightly at times and lost the ball on more occasions than head coach RUDIC would expect from his charges. The win secured the group with three straight victories, while Japan finished third behind Canada. The frequency at which the Croatians visited the Japanese goal was imposing with a 9-2 lead at halftime. Japan is no easy match-up so it was impressive by the Asians that they could hold the Croatians to 3-1 in the second period. SUKNO started the match with a penalty goal but it was the impressive power shooting from the top that had people talking and Japan wondering. Japan was more settled and wanting to be a bigger part of the action in the third period, latching on to Croatia lapses and defending heavily. Croatia applied more pressure in the final quarter but the best play was in the early part of the game when then was more flow. DOBUD, who scored six goals in the previous two games, did not play and JOKOVIC top-scored for Croatia with three, including a power goal from two metres.