Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

Germany player Niklas Wellen must have enjoyed the best moment of the ongoing Hockey World Cup during the high-octane match against defending champions Belgium in a Pool B encounter at Kalinga Stadium on Tuesday evening.

Wellen could not have thought of a better day to become a proud father. He played his heart out, struck a goal and grabbed the man of the match award in the high-voltage game against the Red Lions which ended in a fighting 2-2 draw.

As per team sources, Niklas got the news just before the match. However, he saw the baby boy’s picture in the half time due to connectivity issue. He broke the special news with his teammates immediately and there was a great moment to cherish and celebrate for all the team members.

As per coach Andre Henning, Niklas had even thought not travelling with the World Cup squad to be with his partner for this special moment of his life.

“But, finally he decided to join the squad for the marquee event. He also proved how important he is for the team with the all-important strike against a formidable team like Belgium,” said Henning.

“Niklas did not join us during halftime. He was crying. It was a very emotional day for all of us. Everyone in the team would have accepted if he had decided to miss the World Cup. We are all very happy that the child is healthy. It’s a great story which is more important than the game,” he added.