Kookaburras clinch series
Tristan Clemons’ diving save helped the Kookaburras claim the test series title after defeating India 3-2 in a deciding shoot-out after both sides secured a win and draw in Chhattishgarh Tuesday morning.
During the shoot-out, tensions were high. Daniel Beale, Matt Gohdes and Chris Ciriello overcame India’s goalkeeper Sreejesh Parattu, Trent Mitton and Matthew Swann were unable to successfully net their attempts. It came down to India’s final shoot-out attempt with the score levelled at 2-2.
Under the bar for Australia, Tristan Clemons went one-on-one with Raghunath Vokkaliga after India were awarded a penalty stroke after Clemons made contact with the striker during the shoot-out. It was Clemons’ diving save that block India’s final attempt and secured Australia a final 3-2 victory.
In a fairly even contest across the field in the first half, Australia were able to create themselves two valuable penalty corners early on, however, struggling to breakdown a robust Indian defence, the Kookaburras firepower Chris Ciriello and Kieran Govers were unable to hit target on both occasions.
Australia played without youngster Blake Govers, who broke his ankle in game one on Thursday. A replacement for the World League squad will be announced in the coming days.
Two minutes after quarter time, India broke away with the lead. After successfully working the ball onto Australia’s defender Jeremy Hayward’s foot, India were rewarded with their first penalty corner opportunity of the night. Standing at the top of India’s battery, Raghunath Vokkaliga’s low drag flick was undeniable by Australia’s goalkeeper Leon Hayward, pushing the hosts in front 1-0.
It was at the 36th minute mark that Kookaburras forward Trent Mitton helped Australia to equalise. Channelling his way into the circle, Mitton took on India’s goalkeeper Harjot Sing, finishing the ball bottom right.
Five minutes later, Pal Rupinder Singh broke the deadlock 2-1, after netting a penalty corner drag flick that was out of reach for Kookaburras goalkeeper Tristan Clemons.
In the final quarter, Australia struggled to hold out India after Akashdeep Singh netted a final strike with 10 seconds remaining on the clock, sending the match to a deciding shoot-out, which the Kookaburras finished atop 3-2.
Kookaburras head coach Graham Reid said, “There were some positives that came out of tonight’s match, such as our shoot-out performance which put us in a pressure situation, however, there’s still room for improvement in our defence which hurt us tonight. We shouldn’t be losing a match in the last 10 seconds through a yellow card and a ball coming straight through the middle of our defence.
Speaking about Australia’s upcoming campaign at the Hero Hockey World League in Raipur starting Saturday, Reid added, “The rest of our squad joined us today in preparation for the World League. We have had a good look at our objectives for this tour as we look to narrow down our 2016 Olympic training squad for Rio. We have gathered a lot of information on our players over this tour, which will help us make the tough decision.
“Every game at the upcoming World League will be important for us. Having the quarter finals format in place, anything can happen as it brings into play every team at the tournament.”
The Kookaburras will now look ahead to their Hero Hockey World League campaign which gets underway in Raipur, India on 27 November. The Kookaburras face Belgium in their first pool match on Saturday 28 November, live on Fox Sports in Australia.
News Source: Hockey Australia
Third Test – Match Details:
KOOKABURRAS – 2 (0)*
Trent Mitton 36, 53 (FG) (FG)
INDIA – 3 (1)
Raghunath Vokkaliga 17 (PC), Pal Rupinder Singh 41 (PC), Akashdeep Singh 60 (FG)
*Australia win 3-2 on a shoot-out.
Daniel Beale [AUS] – GOAL (1-0)
Sardar Singh [IND] – MISS (1-0)
Trent Mitton [AUS] – MISS (1-0)
Akashdeep Singh [IND] – MISS (1-0)
Matt Gohdes [AUS] – GOAL (2-0)
Amir Khan [IND] – GOAL (PS Pal Rupinder Singh) (2-1)
Matthew Swann [AUS] – MISS (2-1)
Birendra Lakra [IND] – GOAL (2-2)
Chris Ciriello [AUS] – GOAL (3-2)
Raghunath Vokkaliga [IND] – MISS (PS) (3-2)
Kookaburras Squad for Indian Test Series
Athlete (Hometown, State)
Daniel Beale (Brisbane, QLD) 66/12
Joshua Beltz (Hobart, TAS) 7/2
Kiel Brown (Toowoomba, QLD) 171/6
Chris Ciriello (Melbourne, VIC) 177/114
Tom Craig (Lane Cove, NSW) 16/5
Tristan Clemons (Bunbury, WA) 28/0
Matt Gohdes (Rockhampton, QLD) 137/45
Glenn Simpson (Melbourne, VIC) 130/23
Matthew Swann (Mackay, QLD) 123/6
Tristan White (Wollongong, NSW) 66/3
Dylan Wotherspoon (Murwillumbah, NSW) [QAS athlete] 17/4
Joel Carroll (Darwin, NT) 105/2
Kieran Govers (Wollongong, NSW) 110/56
Jeremy Hayward (Darwin, NT) 39/13
Leon Hayward (GK) (Darwin, NT) 13/0
Flynn Ogilvie (Wollongong, NSW) 14/5
Simon Orchard (Maitland, NSW) 181/54
Trent Mitton (Perth, WA) 79/34
Did Not Play – Additional Squad Members
Matthew Dawson (Central Coast, NSW) 26/3
Tim Deavin (Launceston, TAS) 118/6
Aran Zalewski (Margaret River, WA) 71/8
Kookaburras’ fixtures at World League Final, Raipur
[All on Fox Sports]
Saturday 28 November – 22:00 AEDT: Kookaburras v Belgium
Monday 30 November – 02:00 AEDT: Kookaburras v Great Britain
Wednesday 2 December – 00:00 AEDT: Kookaburras v Canada
Thursday 3 December – tbc: Quarter final
Friday 4 December – tbc: Quarter final
Saturday 5 December – tbc: Semi final / 5-8 playoffs
Sunday 5 December – tbc: Semi final / 5-8 playoffs
Monday 7 December – tbc: Medal matches