Kookburras Off to a Flying Start in International Festival of Hockey

Hockey | Published: Thu 9 November 2017

The Kookaburras are off to a flying start following a significant win over Argentina in their opening match of the Melbourne leg of the International Festival of Hockey on Wednesday, whilst the Hockeyroos have fallen just short losing 2-0 to world number one, the Netherlands.

The Kookaburras have placed themselves in an excellent position ahead of the International Festival of Hockey gold medal match on Sunday thanks to a 9-1 win over Argentina.

Australia's Kiran Arunasalam said "it feels great to get a good win."
 
"Nine goals is pretty special. We played well. Pakistan play hard so to score nine goals is perfect."
 
With a number of players making their contribution to the goal tally at the final whistle, Australia's Blake Govers and Aaron Kleinschmidt were stand outs scoring a hat-trick and a double respectively.
 
The Hockeyroos took on the Netherlands in their first match f the Melbourne leg of the Festival, falling to the world number ones by two goals.
 
After a slow first half with few chances at goal Australia returned to the field after the main break with a new sense of purpose. 
 
Unfortunately despite their attempts they were unable to find the net, whilst the visitors managed to score in bot the first and third quarters.
 
A number of good saves by Australian goal keeper, Rachael Lynch meant that the Netherlands were held to just two goals for the game.
 
Hockeyroos captain Emily Smith said "obviously they're the benchmark of international hockey so we're going to learn a lot."
 
"Every time we come up against them it's a fast flowing game. To stay with them for such a long time was promising, now we've got to get a few more goal scoring opportunities and limit there's which I thought we did quite well."
 
The Melbourne leg of the International Festival of Hockey follows a series of matches played in Bendigo, Victoria, also as part of the Festival. 
 
In Bendigo the Kookaburras played two matches against the New Zealand Black Sticks, bringing home a win in both.
 
These two games saw Western Australian goal keeper, Tristan Clemons display great skill with a number of good saves keeping New Zealand's goal tally to zero in both matches. 
 
The Hockeyroos played one game against the USA whilst in Bendigo where they notched up a 2-0 win. 
 
The Kookaburras and the Hockeyroos will both play their second game, in Melbourne, this afternoon where they will be fighting for a win, bringing them closer to an International Festival of Hockey gold medal.