Monday, June 24, 2024

Commonwealth Games Hockey: How England can beat Australia men, unbeaten since 1998

Our columnist runs the rule over world No 1 Australia and how England men can beat the Kookaburras, who haven’t lost a match at the Commonwealth Games since the inaugural 1998 Games. They have since gone on to win 37 consecutive matches

Australia are playing faster and more accurately than ever before. They are world No 1 for a reason.

Put simply, if you’re not in control, then they will dictate.

Teams which have been most successful to contain the Kookaburras are able to control their own game but you have to have good enough possession to hurt Australia. And that’s a tough prospect under their brilliant Colin Batch.

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  1. England have clearly tried in this tournament to raise the tempo at which they play but haven’t had the passing precision and all round technical skills to make it work. Too many moves peter out in or around the D with a blind pass to no-one or a hopeful smash across goal. The success rate at PCs is still well below par (just 4 from 19 in the last game against Canada).
    Every now and then things come together. It will need Wallace and Goodfield to find their best form, goal scorong opportunities to be taken and the whole team to maintain 100% concentration in the face of Australia’s relentless pressure. Difficult to see a positive outcome but who knows..

  2. Todd as a defender you would have seen some errors in the deep defence that good teams can exploit. I am sure Batch would expect an improvement. More PCs given away than I would expect.


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