The Australian Men’s Hockey Team has secured a berth into their 6th straight Olympic Games semi final defeating Pakistan 7-0. The victory seals top spot in Pool A for the world number one team, who will now face Germany (world rank 3rd).
With an Olympic Semi Final match on the line for both teams, it was Australia who made their intentions clear from the first whistle, scoring two goals in the opening 6 minutes of the match.
Australia’s Captain for the match, Liam de Young, converted a penalty corner to get Australia off to the perfect start 5 minutes into the match. Veteran defender and Australian Co-Captain Mark Knowles followed suit and sent home a penalty stroke earned by Birthday Boy Matthew Butturini.
As the Australian’s have managed to find holes in their opponents’ defences early, tonight was no different. Australia’s pressure going forward was relentless, forcing numerous penalty corner opportunities.
The breakthrough came via a classic Chris Ciriello penalty corner. His double came only moments later through a tomahawk shot from the top of the D. Half time sounded shortly after with Australia leading 4-0 and one step closer to a semi final berth against Germany.
Early second half pressure by Pakistan forced the Australian’s into defensive mode, unable to intercept passes from Pakistan who were showing sublime ball handling skills.
A magnificent Russell Ford field goal against the run of the play swung the momentum back in Australia’s court. Ford’s 42 minute goal was followed by a brilliant tomahawk goal by 5 times World Player of the Year, Jamie Dwyer. In the dying minutes of the match, Glenn Turner chimed in with a goal of his own, after working tirelessly upfront for the entire match.
Australia’s semi final match against Germany will be played at 00:30am, Friday August 10.
Germany has won three of their four pool matches and lost one. Germany is the reigning Olympic Games gold medalist’s from Beijing and bronze medalist’s from Athens. A preview to Australia’s semi final match will be released on August 9.
AUSTRALIA 7 def PAKISTAN 0
Australia: Liam de Young (5m PC), Mark Knowles (6m PS), Chris Ciriello (29m PC/34m FG), Russell Ford (42m FG), Jamie Dwyer (48m PC), Glenn Turner (70m FG).
Australia: Mark Knowles, Liam de Young, Matthew Butturini, Eddie Ockenden
Pakistan: Muhammad (senior) Rizwan, Muhammad Waqas, Shakeel Abbasi
Hockey Australia Press Release