Men's hockey team through to next stage at World League Semi-Final
20 July 2017
HOCKEY: Australia played Egypt last night in the quarter final of the World League Semi-Final, with Kookaburras captain Mark Knowles reaching an incredible 300 international games for Australia.
The Kookaburras were triumphant winning the game 4 – 0 to make the semi-final of the World League Semi-Final, along with qualifying for the 2018 World Cup in the process.
Three minutes into the game and Australia were up for a chance on a penalty corner after a dangerous ball from Egypt in the Australian D. The shot was well defended by Egypt, and the goal attempt by the Kookaburras on the deflection went wide of the net.
Minutes later and Australia were up for another opportunity to get on the score board with a second penalty corner chance, however the flick from Jeremy Hayward went slightly wide and to the right of the net. Finally, on their third penalty corner attempt Jeremy Hayward converted giving the Kookaburras their first goal and the lead in the game.
Jake Whetton was next to score for Australia, with a pass from captain Mark Knowles reaching Whetton at the top right of the D before Whetton used a powerful flick to knock the ball into goal.
A scramble in front of the net in the twentieth minute of play saw Kiran Arunasalam take a shot on goal which was saved by Egyptian goalkeeper Ahmed Adel, before Daniel Beale took another shot at the net with the ball going into goal courtesy of a tap on by Matt Swann.
Coming back from the half time break and Mark Knowles sent an aerial pass down to Jake Whetton who trapped the ball inside the Australian circle before slamming it into the left of the net, increasing Australia’s lead to 4 – nil.
There were more chances for both teams going into the final quarter, with Egypt making a couple of breakaway attempts however the Australian defence quickly turned the ball over, and the game finished up with the score line AUS 4 – 0 EGY.
Kookaburras head coach Colin Batch said: “I think we did what was required tonight and we won the game, so I’m very pleased to have the win and to have reached the semi-final which will take place on Friday.
“We’ve had a good performance so far in this tournament and we need to reach our best level for the next match which is the semi-final.
“It’s also important that we acknowledge Mark Knowles who has reached a milestone 300 caps tonight and whose career continues to flourish, along with Daniel Beale who has reached 100 international caps at this tournament.”
The Kookaburras next play in the semi-final on Friday, 21 July against the winner of the Belgium v New Zealand quarter final which will take place later this evening. The semi-final will be broadcast Live on Fox Sports Australia.