Greece maintained some hope of making the finals of handball’s World Championship despite its 25-20 loss to Germany in Dortmund on Saturday evening. The result is rather flattering for the Greek side, as the hosts enjoyed a greater lead during the game. The Germans turned a 9-9 score to a five-goal advantage (14-9), and even stretched their lead to seven goals in the second half (20-13). However, a composed performance by the Greek team saw them recover some of the ground lost to concede a five-goal defeat that leaves them some hope of overcoming their play-off opponents in Greece. The national team will have the return leg at home on June 20 in the northern city of Drama in Macedonia. «We knew that Germany would want to make us sink, so as to secure qualification from its home game, but we managed to control the pace of the match and cut the distance, leaving us some hope for us to go through,» said national team coach Nikos Mantzos. «We had discipline, passion and a team spirit, which helped us have a good game,» he added.