Kookaburras Set for Pakistan Test in the Top End

Hockey | Published: Thu 9 March 2017

The Australian men’s hockey team will take on Pakistan in a four-test series in Darwin at the end of March.

The International Hockey Open will be played from 28 March to 1 April at Marrara Hockey Centre with the series representing the Kookaburras' first matches under new coach Colin Batch.

Batch predicted a thrilling series against Pakistan, suggesting his side will face a tough challenge.

"It’s very exciting for us to be able to have our first games of the year on home soil, and there’s sure to be some fantastic hockey played against Pakistan, because they are always a challenging opponent,” he said.

"They will have match practice however because they’re playing New Zealand in a five test match series, so they will certainly come into this series match hardened, whereas we will be starting fresh so that will be a challenge in itself.”

The Kookaburras will also visit local schools and host clinics to help promote the sport of Hockey and improve local player skills.

The Australian coaching team will also hold an education session with local coaches.

Hockey NT CEO Ian Harkness said local players and officials are grateful for the opportunities the International Hockey Open brings.

"Exposure and access to elite players and coaching is imperative to the development of the sport locally,” he said.

The Northern Territory Stingers will also play Western Australia’s Men’s Under 18 team in curtain raiser games prior to each test match.