Hockeyroos snare Champions Trophy return9 October 2012
HOCKEY: The Australian women defeated the USA 6-1 in the final of the FIH Champions Challenge event in Ireland overnight, securing automatic qualification into the 2014 Champions Trophy featuring the best eight teams in the world.
Entering the tournament as favourites and the highest ranked team, the Hockeyroos were out for redemption after missing the last Champions Trophy tournament. The Australians finished undefeated scoring a promising 26 goals and conceding only 4 goals in 6 matches.
“We are very pleased with the win today and our dominant performance proves we truly belong in the Champions Trophy. To win today against such a quality opponent demonstrates the progress we have made in the past 18 months,” Hockeyroos Coach Adam Commens said.
In their first major event post the London Olympics, the Hockeyroos were shocked in the 4 minute of the match when the USA flicked home a penalty corner.
However, once Jade Close equalised in the 17th minute, the favourites didn’t look back, scoring two more goals before the half time break.
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The Hockeyroos finished with a flourish, scoring three second half goals, with Jodie Schulz scoring the last two goals from penalty corners.
Youngster Emily Hurtz was awarded the top-scorer prize for the tournament, finishing with five goals. Hurtz scored a hat-trick in the Hockeyroos third game defeat of Wales.
The Champions Challenge 1 tournament provided excellent major event experience to the young Hockeyroos team, especially 2012 debutants Karri McMahon and Jordyn Holzberger.
The Hockeyroos will be returning to Perth on Tuesday 9 October in preparation for the Australian Hockey League starting on 16-27 October at the Perth Hockey Stadium.
Head Coach Adam Commens will use the Australian Hockey League as a selection vehicle for the next major international event, the International Super Series hockey 9’s, occurring in Perth from 22-25 November 2012.