Kookaburras stay on track

Posted on 25th Jun 2015 @ 4:22 PM

Hockey World League
Antwerp, Belgium

Pool A, Match 2

Jake Whetton 9 (FG)
Daniel Beale 32 (PC)
Matthew Swann 42 (FG)
Jamie Dwyer 49 (FG)
Blake Govers 54, 58 (PC, PC)
Muhammad Irfan 13 (PC)

The Kookaburras returned to action at the Hockey World League with a 6-1 win over Pakistan to retain their place at the top of Pool A in Antwerp.

18 year-old Blake Govers took his tally to four goals in two games with a brace of late penalty corner goals, adding to strikes by Jake Whetton, Daniel Beale, Matthew Swann and Jamie Dwyer. 

Jake Whetton’s concluding touch to a clinical breakaway gave the Kookaburras an early lead before Muhammad Irfan’s deflected penalty corner goal levelled things. 

Daniel Beale was calmness personified as he sidestepped the goalkeeper to roll the ball in for 2-1 shortly after half time and a rare Matthew Swann goal ten minutes later extended the World Champions’ advantage. 

Jamie Dwyer netted his 220th international goal for 4-1 as he timed his run across goal to perfection, deflecting Chris Ciriello’s pass into the bottom corner. Then up stepped Govers, who rattled the backboard with his first and found the net high above the goalkeeper with his second as Australia’s lead was extended to 6-1.

Coach Graham Reid was pleased with how his side began the game but admitted that things didn’t go entirely as planned in the opening two quarters before a strong finish.

He said, “First five or ten minutes it was really good. Our tone and energy was good, we were doing the right things, all the things we talked about. Then we got one up and we took our foot off the pedal and against a team like this you can’t do that. 

“They’ll fill the space that you’ve just left and I think they did that. They got a goal back and they got a bit of belief again. The longer you keep Pakistan in the game the longer they’ll stay. 

“At half time we fixed a couple of things. We got our press working a little better. And again tone and energy – that came out. It was much better second half and we were able to put the ball in the net. Our corners worked well; a couple of variations that I thought worked well.”

Looking ahead to Friday’s match against Poland, Reid said, “Poland can also play very well so we’ll be making sure we do the homework there. We don’t know them very well so that’s one of our plans in the next 24 hours, to make sure everyone is on top of their players and who goes where.”
The Kookaburras face Poland at 4:00am AEST on Saturday.    

Source: Hockey Australia