Aus­tralia thrash min­nows China

The Hitavada - - SPORTS -

IRE­LAND crashed out of the men’s hockey World Cup af­ter los­ing 2-3 to Eng­land, hand­ing China a ‘lucky’ berth in the knock­out stages de­spite be­ing crushed 0-11 by two-time hold­ers Aus­tralia here on Fri­day.

The last round Pool B en­gage­ments con­cluded. Aus­tralia topped the pool with an all-win record af­ter thrash­ing lowly China in a lop-sided af­fair and re­mained on course for a hat-trick of ti­tles.

Aus­tralia ac­cu­mu­lated nine points from three games and se­cured a di­rect en­try into the quar­ter­fi­nals while Eng­land fin­ished sec­ond on four points and China (2 points) scrapped through by se­cur­ing the third spot with two draws.

De­spite the heavy loss, China made it to the cross-overs, cour­tesy Eng­land’s win over Ire­land.

If the Eng­land-Ire­land match had ended in a draw, China would have been thrown out of the com­pe­ti­tion.

In the cross-overs, China will take on France on De­cem­ber 10, while Eng­land will face New Zealand the same day. World no 7 Eng­land scored three field goals through David Con­don (15th minute), Liam Ansell (37th) and James Gall (38th) to come out vic­to­ri­ous. For world No 11 Ire­land, Chris Cargo (35th) and Shane O’Donoghue sounded the board.

In the match be­tween David and Go­liath, Aus­tralia toyed with the hap­less Chi­nese de­fence and scored goals at will to go into the half­way break with a com­mand­ing 6-0 lead. Blake Govers (10th, 19th, 34th min­utes) scored a hat­trick, while young Tim Brand (33rd, 55th) ac­counted for two goals. Aran Zalewski (15th), Tom Craig (16th), Jeremy Hay­ward (22nd), Jake Whet­ton (29th), Dy­lan Wother­spoon (38th) and Flynn Ogilive (49th) were the other goal get­ters for Aus­tralia.

Com­ing into the match with two im­pres­sive draws against higher-ranked Eng­land (2-2) and Ire­land (1-1), it turned out to be a com­pletely dif­fer­ent ball game for the Chi­nese, as they found it dif­fi­cult to breach the huge gulf.

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