Kookaburras dominant at half-way mark
30 July 2012
HOCKEY: The Kookaburras have dominated the first half of their first match against South Africa but failed to make the most of their opportunities, taking in a 2-0 half time lead despite multiple shots on goal.
In a sign of their dominance, the Kookaburras had five penalty corners to zero in the first half, but failed to convert any of them.
Although South Africa put up a good early resistance defensively, eventually the Kookaburras began to work their way on top thanks to their superior skill.
However it didn’t go all their way early, with goalkeeper Nathan Burgers going down after a collision with a South African striker.
They also found themselves a player down after Tim Deavin was sent off with a yellow card.
However five-time world player of the year Jamie Dwyer steadied the ship, drawing a penalty stroke after his shot on goal struck the body of the South African defender. He converted the stroke, and gave the Kookaburras a deserving lead.
By mid-way through the half the Kookaburras were well on top, but still not getting reward for their effort.
It appeared they had a break through after Russell Ford scored from a penalty corner, however the video referral showed that the ball had hit his foot before he got his shot away.
Finally the Kookaburras added to their tally, with Dwyer again involved with a brilliant shot from the baseline which was finished by Matthew Butturini to make it 2-0 before half time.
More to come...
Shaun Anderson in London