Stars and Stripes – England vs. Australia
Intensity was the word of the moment as the England team surged onto the pitch and displayed strong commitment to out compete Australia in taking the first centre draw and possession. A counter-attack saw Australia take the first goal with a feed from behind, which we quickly recognized was a favourite attacking play. England’s first goal came from Ruby Smith with a fantastic left hand shot. More goals followed as England’s belief in themselves strengthened and our confidence grew creating a 5-2 lead for us midway through the first half. A strong individual performance from one Australian attacker (Nielson) brought the Ozzies back into the game and after a long possession play by England, the half time score stood at a draw of 6-6.The half time talk covered defensive strategy and reminded up to keep focus all the way through the second half.
A nail-bitingly close second half saw the Ozzies go a goal up, only for England to equalize again. We tried to hold possession at 9 all in the last few minutes but an unfortunate turnover meant the Ozzies got a shot off, this was expertly saved by Gaunt in goal, only to be collected off a rebound and put away. With 42 seconds left on the clock, the English fought hard and Merrifield came out with the ball off the centre, however, sadly a last attacking push did not convert and the final whistle went at a score of 10-9. An unfortunate loss, but, with excellent individual performances and England going from strength to strength, the potential is very exciting.