Kookaburras finish group stage in style
Kookaburras finish group stage in style
Check out the live coverage of AUS vs GER, via Twitter.
It’s starting in 40 minutes.
Wondering how the Australia v England match went? It was a close one. Australia won 2 – 1.
Looking for Eddie’s thoughts on the game? Wondering what the highlights were? What about the next match against Germany?
Watch the video below.
Grant Schubert following Australia’s 7-2 win over the Netherlands, and his hat-trick, in the 2009 Hockey Champions Trophy in Melbourne:
And Jamie Dwyer:
Here’s a video from after the Australia v Netherlands game.
Check out the live Twitter feed for updates from AUS v NED match as it happens.
Having recently returned to Amsterdam after 10 days in Hobart playing for Tasmania, I think it is appropriate to firstly mention one of the biggest talking points of this years Australian Hockey League.
Many keen hockey followers would be aware that there has been a new rule approved for Hockey as of May 2009; however, I’m not sure to what level of hockey it’s applied to.
The self-play free hit is intended, as according to the rule guidelines, to speed up the game and reduce the possibility of danger at ‘dead ball’ situations in the 23m area of the field.
It has the potential to be as redefining a change to the sport, since the offside rule was thanked, then asked to take an extended rest on the proverbial bench.
Generally, it allows a player to pass to themselves from a free hit with the ball still required to travel the one metre distance.
One great advantage is that it creates limited opportunities for players and teams breaking down the play. This means giving away free hits on purpose to stop the flow of the opposition, forcing them to slow down and for the defensive team to get numbers behind the ball, similar to the now infamous flood for the AFL educated.
The play should become quicker, I think it was played at a faster pace. Everywhere except the attacking 23 that is, where I personally think the rule, at the AHL, was flawed.
Now, I’m not entirely sure what the interpretation of the international rule is, but as played in the AHL, any free hit inside the 23 (or 25 yard line) had to be taken with ALL players five metres away. In addition the ball can not be hit into the circle without first traveling five metres, passed or dribbled. As you can imagine, opposition teams are not going to allow someone to dribble five metres then hit the ball in, or allow a free player enough space to receive a pass then hit the ball in.
It resulted in a dramatically reduced number of deflection goals and balls being hit into the circle in general. I guess this was the idea to reduce the potential danger for balls being lifted, but it made it hard at instances such as long corners: the play became a bit stagnant at times.
My confusion of the rule is brought about by another innovative competition which is the European Hockey League. This matches the best club teams from all over Europe against each other. In this competition I am led to believe that the only requirement is that the ball must travel the usual one metre before being hit into the circle.
I’m not sure if it is better, I haven’t played so I will reserve judgment.
I think it needs to be resolved to be in the best interests of the game, to enhance the excitement, to generate interest in Australia and around the world. Just as relinquishing the burden of the offside rule did; the game is better off without it.
Obviously a lot of players conceded there were going to be some teething problems regarding the interpretations of the rules between each game. I don’t expect this to happen exclusively within Australia, but throughout world hockey as its introduced during different tournaments throughout the calendar year and into the major competition, the 2009 Champions Trophy in Melbourne in November/December.
As you would expect players may find it hard at times to adjust to some of the aspects of the rule, umpires may too find it difficult, I don’t know. But I think the main criteria the players are looking for is consistency. We have to be tolerant, which is sometimes tricky.
Overall, I think it is a positive step, perhaps a little bit unproven especially at international level, however still a potential step forward.
In terms of rule changes to traditional sports, games such as Australian Rules Football over the last few years have been constantly adjusting, creating, tweaking rules and to be honest perhaps just stealing ideas from the national netball competition. Leaving many to strongly advising from afar, to leave the game alone, or words to that effect. But my point is they have done so with the idea of appealing to a target market, trying to keep the game popular and appeal to youngsters and parents alike; they are the future of sport.
This is my reasoning why I like the fact hockey is evolving, with the idea of becoming more viewer friendly, whilst generating increasing interest. Hockey deserves it; the game has a strong future.
The last 3 games have been a little bit disappoiting on our behalf.
Away games against Kampong and title contenders Amsterdam ended at 1 – 3 and 1 -2 respectively. The first game being the harder pill to swallow. At the time Kampong were below us on the ladder. Now we have been leapfrogged by them, plus a few other teams to effectively end any slim chance we had of a finals berth in the first place.
We played a lot better against Amsterdam on a friday night game. We created a number of chances and in my opinion could easily have at least drawn the match. We seem to play better against better opposition, lifting our game when needed, but unable to force the issue and generate the tempo of the game. This was evident in our last game on Sunday, losing 2 – 3 at home to KZ. This was, in a way, the biggest disappointment of the last 3 matches.
I was able to score in each of the 3 games which was positive, but probably could have more of an impact through the midfield.
In addition to some average games, my bike got stolen, which is often the case in Amsterdam.. but I miss my bike! A new one is always around the corner.
This weekend, away at Tilburg, should be a tough match where we need to have a good performance. After that I will fly back to Australia for the AHL finals week. In the great city of Hobart.
Might see you there.
The match against Rotterdam was always going to be a tough game. They have some really good players, including kookaburra Mark Knowles. As well as some ex tassie tiger players in attack, New Zealanders Phil Burrows and Simon Child. We lost the previous game against them 0 – 2 in Rotterdam, so it was nice to play them at home this time around.
We couldn’t have started the match any better with a goal in the first 30 seconds. I was able to score early with one of the easiest tap ins after some good work by Rehan Butt and Steven Faaij. The ball stopped 30cm from the goal line with the keeper no where to be seen, in the right spot at the right time I guess!
We struggled a little bit for the rest of the half before putting in a much better performance in the second half. Down 1 – 2 at the break we had to play confidently to reduce the deficit. However, instead it was rotterdam who capitilised first to put us further behind at 1 -3. Slowly, we managed to get back in the game, firstly from a penalty stroke which Luke Doerner easily converted, then another from a PC to draw level not too long from full time. It was unfortunate that we then conceeded a late goal which made it impossible for us to win the match. 30 seconds from full time Luke put another solid flick away to tie the game 4 all and complete his hat trick. Finishing the game with a draw was a little bit dissapointing, but we were happy considering the scoreline with a minute left. Plus, it was probably a fair enough result for the match.
Still sitting outside the finals in equal 5th, with another tough game next week against Kampong
Last few weeks we have been busy training and getting ready for the second half of the season. So far we have played twice in the first week and we are sitting 5th on the table.
First game was last sunday against Bloemendaal. We went down 2 – 4 in a reasonably tight game, (0 – 0 half time). However, we made a few mistakes and didn’t put away enough chances. Luke scored a pc flick and I also managed a goal.
On Wednesday night we played Pinoke and had a nice result, 3 – 1 win. Luke scored twice more and I got one myself in a very pleasing win for the club. Its a good start to the second half of the season and our first win in 2009. On Sunday we play at home again, against Rotterdam which will be a close game.