Salem Radio Network News Thursday, September 23, 2021

Sports

Olympics-Hockey-Australia, Germany win in men’s tournament

By Daniel Leussink

TOKYO (Reuters) -Australia won their third straight match in the men’s hockey tournament at the Tokyo Olympics on Tuesday after putting five goals past Argentina, while Germany powered past Britain.

Hosts Japan earned their first point of the tournament following a 2-2 draw against New Zealand and India defeated Spain 3-0.

Australia’s ‘Kookaburras’ went behind in the fourth minute as the match got underway in rainy conditions but had scored four goals by halftime and went on to win 5-2.

“It was a good grind that first five, 10 minutes,” said Andrew Charter, Australia’s goalkeeper.

“We did concede one but at the same time, we had a couple of opportunities. This is international hockey – you’re not going to go through a game without any opportunities against you.”

Australia drew level with less than a minute to go until the end of the opening quarter when forward Blake Govers scored a penalty corner, confirming his reputation as a penalty corner specialist.

That was followed by three more goals in the second quarter and one after the break, giving Australia – who beat Japan 5-3 and India 7-1 in their first two games – the maximum nine points from three matches.

“These first three games are shaping up really well,” said goalie Charter.

“We haven’t had a chance to test ourselves against much competition (in the run-up to the Olympics), except New Zealand.”

Also in the men’s competition, Germany handed Britain their first defeat of the tournament, winning 5-1, including three goals by attacker Florian Fuchs.

Japan, playing in the men’s hockey tournament for the first time since the 1968 Mexico Games, avoided a third straight defeat but coach Siegfried Aikman was disappointed not to have come away with the win over New Zealand.

“I’m a bit emotional at this moment because our team so did very well and we couldn’t bring it home,” Aikman said.

“We did almost everything well and it’s a matter of experience. A few counter-attacks and we are in trouble and that happens through the tournament.”

India secured their second victory at the tournament with a goal from midfielder Simranjeet Singh and a double from defender Rupinder Pal Singh, though the game was closer than the scoreline suggests.

(Reporting by Daniel Leussink; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman/Peter Rutherford)

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