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Men's Hockey Pro League

Rival Watch: India to face Australia after beating World Champions in FIH Men's Hockey Pro League 2022-23

Published at :March 11, 2023 at 7:51 AM
Modified at :March 13, 2023 at 6:06 PM
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DibyajyotiDas


The Men in Blue will hope to build on the momentum after defeating Germany.

The Indian men’s Hockey team will next face Australia in the FIH Men's Hockey Pro League 2022-23. India have been grouped together with Germany and Australia in this leg of fixtures and will face each of them twice. India are currently placed third in the FIH Men's Hockey Pro League, after beating the world champions Germany, with 11 points from five matches. Earlier, the ‘Men in Blue’ had faced New Zealand and Spain twice each. India managed to defeat New Zealand on both occasions but only managed a draw and a defeat against Spain, they did beat the Spaniard in the tie-breaker to earn two points in the drawn game.

Australia on the other hand stands at eighth in the FIH Men's Hockey Pro League table. The Kookaburras have four points from their four games so far. They have faced Argentina and Spain twice each. Australia managed only one win in those four games which came against Argentina.

The last time India and Australia faced each other was in the five-match Test series that was held in Australia before the FIH Men’s World Cup 2023. Their last meeting turned out to be a 5-4 victory for the Kookaburras.

About the team in FIH Men's Hockey Pro League

Ranked fourth in the world, Australia are considered one of the most successful countries in Hockey history. The team from down under has won the Hockey World Cup three times, in 1986, 2010, and 2014. Apart from that they also have 10 Olympic medals to their name which includes one gold medal. Australia also won the inaugural edition of the FIH Pro League in 2019.

Coach

Colin Batch was appointed as the coach of the Australian team in January 2017. Since joining the Kookaburras as the head coach, Batch has led his team to two Commonwealth Games gold medals, and a third-place finish in the 2018 World Cup. Before being appointed as the head coach of the Australian team, the 64-year-old was the coach of the New Zealand Men’s national team between 2013 and 2016. Batch was also the assistant coach of the Australian team between 2001 and 2008, which is considered to be the Golden period of Australian Hockey.

Australian Players to watch out against India in FIH Men's Hockey Pro League

Jeremy Hayward

With more than 160 appearances for Australia, Jeremy Hayward is one of the more experienced players in the team. The defender made his debut in 2014 and was part of the Australian team that won the 2014 Hockey World Cup. Despite being a defender, Jeremy has a knack for scoring goals. This was evident when the 30-year-old ended up being the top-scorer of the 2023 Men’s FIH Hockey World Cup. Hayward is absolutely lethal from the penalty corners and also is very good at ball distribution.

Blake Govers

Blake Govers has a prolific record as a goalscorer. The forward was the joint top-scorer of the 2018 Hockey World Cup and was also the top-scorer in the 2019 FIH Pro League which Australia ended up winning.  His display in the World Cup earlier this year and in the five-match test series against India was also very impressive. The 26-year-old has scored 89 goals in 103 appearances for Australia so far in his career.

What to expect in the FIH Men's Hockey Pro League 2022-23 games

The two fixtures against Australia will be in no way an easy task for India. India’s record against Australia is also very poor. The ‘Men in Blue’ has faced the Kookaburras 135 times in history and has only managed to beat them 24 times. Australia on the other hand came out on top on 91 occasions.

The Indian team will have to be their best in order to get a result against the Commonwealth Games champions. An early goal for India could be the key to getting a win in the FIH Men's Hockey Pro League. They also have to make sure that they don’t let Australia dominate the possession. The senior Indian players will have to step up if India are to get a positive result from the two fixtures.

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