Home town players inspire Kookaburras
29 Jan 2006 15:39
Australia 3 defeated Spain 0
AUS – Travis Brooks FG 27m, Luke Doerner PC 44m, Craig Victory FG 63m
The Kookaburras won game two of their series against Spain 3-0 thanks to the contribution of home town players in Melbourne.
After Friday's 4-4 draw, national coach Barry Dancer was looking for a better effort from his charges and for the first half it looked like he'd be left wanting.
With high turnovers from both sides, it was a half dominated by defences, goalkeeper Stephen Mowlam and captain Bevan George controlling for the Kookaburras.
It wasn't until the 27th minute that the Kookaburras managed to break the deadlock through some crafty work in front of goal from Travis Brooks, the Victorian's scrappy goal the only score for the half.
The second half saw the Kookaburras start to dominate possession, creating opportunities in the circle. It wasn't until their first penalty corner for the match though, in the 44th minute, that they made the most of those opportunities with an accurate Luke Doerner flick beating the Spanish defences and giving the Kookaburras a 2-0 lead.
Spain picked up their game after the Doerner goal, creating multiple opportunities, particularly from penalty corners
However, Mowlam kept them out, throwing himself around the box saving what looked like certain goals. In an outstanding performance in front of his home crowd, Mowlam was clearly best a field and the Kookaburras will be looking for more of the same in March at the Commonwealth Games.
To rub salt into the Spanish wound, Craig Victory made it 3-0 in the 63rd minute when he pounced on a deflection under the keeper's nose and had no trouble scoring his first goal since returning from injury.
The match was made even more special with two milestones to Liam De Young (100 games) and Dean Butler (150 games) for the Kookaburras.
The series now moves to Tasmania where games three, four and five will be played on 1, 3, and 5 February at the State Hockey Centre in Hobart.
Meanwhile, the Hockeyroos have finished third in the four nations tournament in Argentina, after defeating England in penalty strokes.
After neither side could manage to score during regular time, the match was decided by penalty strokes. The Hockeyroos reversing their last penalty stroke shoot out at the Champions Trophy, this time coming out winners 4-3.