Australia trots into the semi-finals of the Hockey World Cup for the 12th time, beating Spain 4-3. hockey news

Jeremy Hayward struck twice from penalty corners to earn title favorites Australia a narrow 4-3 win over Spain and into their 12th straight semi-final at the FIH Men’s Hockey World Cup here on Tuesday. Australia, winners of the 1986, 2010 and 2014 editions, have reached the World Cup semi-finals 11 times since the 1978 tournament in Buenos Aires. Spain captain Marc Miralles made a costly mistake in their quarter-final match as he failed to score in the penalty stroke four minutes into the final hooter, while his team was practicing 3-4.

Had he scored, the match would have gone to a shootout.

Australia will face the winner of Wednesday’s quarter-final match between the Netherlands and South Korea in Friday’s semi-finals.

In the last tournament in 2018, Australia lost to the Dutch in the semi-finals in a penalty shootout.

Hayward scored from penalty corners in the 33rd and 37th minutes, while Flynn Ogilvie (30th) and captain Arran Zalewski (32nd) scored for Australia.

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Javier Gispert (20th), Marc Recassens (24th) and Marc Miralles (41st) were the scorers for Spain who will now return home. They finished 13th last time.

Spain stopped Australia from playing their fast-paced, one-touch game in the first quarter and held their own. Australia, however, were the more dominant side with three penalty corners awarded in the first 15 minutes but failed to convert once.

Penalty corner specialist Blake Grover took two without success and Jeremy Hayward flicked once for the same result as both sides were goalless at the end of the first quarter.

But in the second quarter, Spain surprised by scoring two goals to Australia’s one. At one point, thoughts of an upset victory might have crossed the minds of the large crowd at the Kalinga Stadium. The European team was leading 2-0 until the last minute of the second quarter.

Spain took a 2-0 lead in the 24th minute with two great field goals by Javier Gispert and Marc Recassens. But with just seconds left in the second quarter, Australia pulled one back after a Matt Dawson pass to Flynn Ogilvie found himself unchallenged in Spain’s striking circle.

Ogilvy hit hard and beat the keeper to ease the pressure on them.

If Spain were the better side in the second quarter, Australia were clearly the dominant side in the third, as they scored three of the four goals they scored in that period.

There was a three-goal burst in the space of five minutes for Australia as Aran Zalewski found the target in the second minute of the third quarter, with Jeremy Hayward striking twice in the 33rd and 37th minutes. Trailing 0-2 just before the end of the second quarter, Australia led 4-2 in the third quarter.

Spain went one behind when Marc Miralles scored from a penalty corner four minutes into the third quarter.

The fourth quarter was a close battle and Spain had a chance to score the equalizer and take the match to a shootout. But Miralles wasted the penalty stroke with Australia goalkeeper Andrew Charter, who was later named man of the match, blocking his outstretched left-footed shot.

(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and appeared on a syndicated feed.)

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