Late drama seals Australia win against Great Britain

Ashley Jackson took his tally to 126 international goals against Australia 1

Australia 4 (2)
Blake Govers 19, 43, 60 (PC, PC, PC)
Matthew Dawson 25 (PC)

Great Britain 3 (2)
Ashley Jackson 10, 11, (FG, PC)
Sam Ward 49 (PC)

A hat-trick from Australia’s Blake Govers, including a late penalty corner handed the hosts a narrow 4-3 win in the second test of the series with Great Britain. Govers netted three drag flicks to add to another set piece from Matthew Dawson as the Kookaburras came from 2-0 down to snatch a win. Ashley Jackson had given Bobby Crutchley’s side a 2-0 lead in the first quarter and although Sam Ward levelled the scores with 11 minutes to go, Govers’ late intervention settled an entertaining contest.   

Australia started well, pushing Great Britain back into their own half. The hosts won an early penalty corner but James Bailey stood firm to see off Matt Gohdes and clear the danger.

Great Britain’s forays forwards in the first quarter were restricted to counter attacks. Alastair Brogdon’s pace and skills caused the Australia defence plenty of problems. The visitors took the lead on ten minutes. A ball across the baseline from Adam Dixon was deflected by Jackson at the near post. The ball looped over the goalkeeper and in. It was 2-0 a minute later from GB’s first penalty corner. Jackson ripped an unstoppable shot into the bottom corner giving the goalkeeper no chance. Australia forced another penalty corner late on in the first period. This time Govers took the shot. His former team mate at Wimbledon, Bailey did well to get down and make the save ensuring it was 2-0 to GB at the quarter time break.

Australia won a penalty corner early in the second quarter. This time Govers was able to find the net, firing in a low drag flick to Bailey’s left to halve the deficit. The Kookaburras’ high press was not allowing Bobby Crutchley’s side to get the ball out and with five minutes left in the quarter the hosts were awarded another penalty corner. This was despatched by Matthew Dawson to level the scores. Great Britain’s response was immediate and a swift break set up Nick Catlin whose shot flew just wide and it was all square at the break. 

GB forced a penalty corner within two minutes of the restart. Jackson went for his hat-trick but this time Andrew Charter got across to make the save.
As the game opened up Australia swept forwards on the break with four players up against just Mikey Hoare. The Wimbledon man read the play beautifully and was able to cut out the pass and clear when it looked certain the hosts would score. Great Britain lost Dan Shingles with five minutes left in the third period after a collision with Gohdes and with three minutes left the Kookaburras won another penalty corner. Govers took the honours again and his powerful drag flick beat Bailey and handed the striker his second of the match.

Great Britain hit back and won a penalty corner after four minutes of the final quarter. With no Jackson on the field Ward took the shot and beat the goalkeeper with a superb drag flick to make it 3-3. Bailey had to be alert to make another save to stop Trent Mitton re-establishing a lead and then Great Britain lost Hoare for the closing stages as the Wimbledon defender pulled up after making a tackle.

Jackson almost nabbed his hat-trick after a lovely link up with Catlin but Tim Deavin somehow blocked his shot. Tyler Lovell was peppered with two minutes to go by the Great Britain attack with players swarming around him looking for the winner but somehow the Kookaburras’ ‘keeper kept them at bay. With the clock counting down there was one last chance for the hosts via another penalty corner. Govers continued his hot streak and broke GB’s hearts with his third, making it 4-3.

Bobby Crutchley, Head Coach:
Our performance today was littered with inconsistency. We had some decent spells, but suffered too many turnovers in possession. We will be looking for improvement in the third test in Perth”

Dan Fox, Great Britain Defender:

“They played pretty well today and we’re a bit disappointed in our performance. We were a little fortunate to go 2-0 ahead and then they scored a few. I thought we’d snuck a draw at the end but Blake Govers stepped up and won it for them.

We need to be a bit better on the ball. We need to receive the ball under pressure better and not turn it over so cheaply that’ll put them under pressure.

Mikey Hoare and Dan Shingles look a bit sore but we have 48 hours to patch them up for Tuesday. We’ll go back to Perth tonight to rest up. We’ll be desperate to get the win and level the series.”

These two sides face off again at the Hockey Champions Trophy in London in June. For more details including ticketing information click here.

Matches are being streamed live via Epicentre.tv. For full details on how to watch click here.


Great Britain team vs. Australia   

Starting XI

Name

Club

James Bailey

Wimbledon

Ashley Jackson (c)

Holcombe

Harry Martin

Beeston

Alan Forsyth

Surbiton

Mikey Hoare

Wimbledon

Phil Roper

Wimbledon

Dan Shingles

Reading

David Condon

East Grinstead

Iain Lewers

Holcombe

Nick Catlin

Holcombe

Dan Fox

Holcombe

Substitutes used:

Henry Weir

Wimbledon

Alastair Brogdon

Wimbledon

Sam Ward

Holcombe

Adam Dixon

Beeston

Chris Grassick

Surbiton

David Ames

Beeston