Kookaburras remain on top
1 December 2009
The Kookaburras remain undefeated and on top of the points table at the ABN AMRO Hockey Champions Trophy despite being pushed all the way by England during tonight’s match.
Despite the Kookaburras entering the match as hot favourites, it was England who struck first, Iain Mackay scoring for England against the run of play in the 13th minute.
After a strong start by England it was Des Abbott who lifted for the Kookaburras, with the home team eventually drawing even at the 22 minute mark thanks to a penalty corner goal to veteran Grant Schubert.
Schubert’s fourth goal of the tournament injected the Aussies into action and the second half began with both teams eager to take their scoring chances.
Despite tight defending by England within their circle, penalty corners in quick succession for Australia brought Abbott alive for the second time in the match. His stunning goal in the 59th minute after his first attempt rebounded off the goal frame lifted the crowd and gave the Kookaburras the lead.
Kookaburras coach Ric Charlesworth said despite this being the teams closest result to date, he believes this performance was the best by him team to date at the tournament.
“I think today we played very well and you don’t always get the reward for what you do, but today I was much happier with the quality of our hockey,” said Charlesworth.