#  Australia massacre debutants Japan 6-0

#  Australia play Malaysia tomorrow


By Rizal Abdullah

Australia got off to a roaring start to their Sultan of Johor Cup campaign with a 6-0 whitewash of newcomers Japan in their opening match played under challenging conditions at the Taman Daya Hockey Stadium in Johor Bahru on Monday.

The thumping win is certainly a clear warning to Malaysia when they play Australia under cooler conditions on Tuesday. The Australia – Malaysia match is the last match of the day at 8.30pm.

The Burras were clearly the more superior side, forcing the Japanese to sit back for most parts of the match. Australia clearly had last year’s outing in the same tournament in mind when they finished second from the bottom.

Despite the convincing win over Japan, Australia’s head coach Ben Bishop is expecting a tough match against the Malaysians.

“A good win indeed, especially under challenging conditions. Going against Malaysia tomorrow be another demanding match,” said Bishop at the post match press conference.

“Our penalty conversions got things going for us against Japan. We’ve been practicing that and hope it will be key for us in our matches.”

Australia opened the scoring through Andrew Scanlon’s penalty corner conversion after just six minutes. The men in yellow also had a goal ruled out minutes earlier.

Kiran Arunasalam doubled the lead from open play in the 19th minute before Joshua Simmonds made it 3-0 four minutes later.

Japan forced two penalty corners on the counter but nothing came out of this. Instead Australia stretched their lead to 5-0 with goals from Max Hendry and Tom Craig. Hendry doubled his tally seconds before the hooter.

“Australia were too strong for us. The gulf of class was obvious and we lack experience at this stage. We need to challenge harder,” said Japan’s Mizami Takayasu.

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