The Hockeyroos have taken maximum points from their two FIH Pro League encounters against Great Britain after persistent lighting and thunderstorms saw tonight’s second match cancelled.
After an initial 45 minute delay because of lightning with six minutes to go in the second quarter and Great Britain leading 1-0, the players returned to complete the first half only for the match to again be halted a minute before the second half was set to resume.
A lengthy delay ensued as the storm continued until the FIH Chief Executive Officer eventually made the decision to abandon the game, meaning it is considered cancelled.
As stipulated in the FIH regulations, if one of the two matches played between two teams is cancelled prior to the commencement of the fourth quarter, the winner of the other match will receive double points.
Thus the Hockeyroos come away from the weekend with the maximum six points after winning yesterday’s match 2-1.
“The rules have been put in place so at the end of the day it is out of our control, we can’t do anything about it,” said Hockeyroos co-captain Emily Chalker after the decision to call the game off.
“We were hoping to get out there because we still had something to prove. Being 1-0 down and just missing the opportunity to get a penalty stroke awarded, everyone was quite fired up and wanting to get out there.
“We love playing against Great Britain, they are a really tough opposition so we were looking forward to finishing the game and they have come a long way to play so I’m sure it is frustrating for both sides.”
“Unfortunately mother nature intervenes sometimes and we can’t control the weather but I guess if there is a positive, hopefully there is some good rain falling in places that need it, especially those that have been affected by the bushfires and drought.”
While Great Britain held a deserved early advantage, Australia took the initiative after the initial storm had passed over.
With Amy Lawton, Renee Taylor and Rachael Lynch returning to the side, Gabi Nance was pushed into the striker line.
The hosts started strongly with Sophie Taylor overlapping to earn Rosie Malone, who was making her 50th Hockeyroos appearance, an early opportunity, before Lynch was called upon to save a scramble from a penalty corner to keep the scoreboard deadlocked at quarter time.
Great Britain struck in the 17th minute through captain Anna Toman from their next set piece, with a well-executed bunt left across the top allowing her space to strike into the bottom right hand corner.
Having been hauled from the field and handed fresh instructions during the delay, the Hockeyroos responded upon the resumption with Nance passing round the encroached Great Britain goalkeeper to Malone, who struck the defender seemingly in front of goal.
The Hockeyroos referred the penalty corner decision seeking an opportunity from the penalty spot, but it was dismissed on the basis that Great Britain had another defender in behind.
The half-time siren ended and no sooner a huge storm settled in for the night, and despite a lengthy waiting period, the match was cancelled.
The Hockeyroos will now look ahead to their next FIH Pro League matches against Argentina in Perth on 6/7 March. Tickets for the matches are available through Ticketek, with the matches LIVE on Kayo and/or Fox Sports.
Great Britain 1 (Toman 17’)
Match cancelled at half time due to storms
@ Sydney Olympic Park Hockey Centre
Hockeyroos: 1.Sophie Taylor, 2.Rosie Malone, 4.Amy Lawton, 7.Jodie Kenny, 8.Georgia Wilson, 11.Karri Mcmahon, 12.Greta Hayes, 13.Edwina Bone, 15.Kaitlin Nobbs, 16.Gabi Nance, 18.Jane Claxton, 21.Renee Taylor, 22.Kate Jenner, 23.Kalindi Commerford, 26.Emily Chalker (c), 27.Rachael Lynch (gk), 30.Grace Stewart
Unused Substitute: 19.Jocelyn Bartram (gk)
Great Britain: 1.Maddie Hinch (gk), 4.Laura Unsworth (c), 6.Anna Toman, 7.Hannah Martin, 9.Susannah Townsend, 10.Sarah Robertson, 13.Elena Rayer, 14.Tessa Howard, 22.Elizabeth Neal, 24.Shona McCallin, 26.Lily Owsley, 27.Jo Hunter, 29.Esme Burge, 31.Grace Balsdon, 33.Isabelle Petter, 34.Charlotte Watson, 35.Leah Wilkinson
Unused substitute: 25.Sabbie Heesh (gk)
FIH Pro League 2020 matches – Sydney Olympic Park Hockey Centre
Saturday 25 January
Hockeyroos 3 (Malone 21’, Bone 59’, Commerford 60’)
Belgium 3 (Versavel 33’, Englebert 45’, Nelen 55’)
Hockeyroos win 4-2 on penalties
Sunday 26 January
Hockeyroos 1 (Nance 45’)
Belgium 1 (Duquesne 47’)
Belgium wins 3-1 on penalties
Saturday 1 February
Hockeyroos 2 (Kershaw 26’, Stewart 60’)
Great Britain 1 (Robertson 18’)
Sunday 2 February
Great Britain 1 (Toman 17’)
Click here for a full list of the Hockeyroos’ FIH Pro League 2020 fixtures.