|March 6th, 2010|
|19||Pool B||4:30pm||AUS - ESP||2 - 0 (1 - 0)||Final|
In this World Cup, Australia lost their opening game to England (2-3) but came back to beat India (5-2) and South Africa (12-0), while Spain beat South Africa (4-2) and India (5-2) but lost to Pakistan (1-2).
The game started under the Delhi blaring afternoon sun, but it did not seem to bother the Kookaburras who spent the first ten minutes peppering the Spanish goal. Grant SCHUBERT had a superb opportunity alone in front of the goal but lost the ball in his feet. Spain earned a penalty corner on their first counter-attack in the 7th minute, after intervention of the video-umpire, but the powerful high flick was wonderfully saved on the line by Kiel BROWN.
Both teams were keeping a tight marking in midfield and key players such as Jamie DWYER were kept under a close Spanish watch. Finally, Edward OCKENDEN forced a penalty-corner in the 20th minute and Luke DOERNER did not pass on the chance to open the scoring with a mid-height flick that beat Francisco CORTES in the Spanish goal. Spain scrambled two penalty-corners at the other end, then nearly scored when Eduard TUBAU stole a ball in midfield and arrived one-on-one with Nathan BURGERS, but the Australian keeper managed to push him aside enough for his shot to go off target.
Spain were given a penalty-corner in the dying seconds of the period, after another referral to the video-umpire, but it was saved again on the line, this time by Luke DOERNER, busy at both ends on penalty-corners. The Spaniards were saved by the post on a penalty-corner soon after the break, then scrambled two set pieces of their own. With time passing and the score still marginally in favor of the Kookaburras, Spain tried to push more but were repeatedly caught in the tight net thrown by the Australian midfield. Spain were also exposing more their defense to counter-attacks and Jamie DWYER ran 75m after stealing a ball; he set up perfectly Kieran GOVERS on the second post but the ball eluded him.
Spain picked up a yellow card on the play and were subsequently pushed back on their heels for a while and Glenn TURNER added a second goal for the Kookaburras in the 60th minute after a lengthy series of passes that mystified the Spaniards. Spain pushed in the final minutes, with Australia happy to just hit the ball up field. The Spaniards scrambled two more penalty-corner chances and Australia bagged the three points of the win, avenging in the process their loss against Spain in the semi-finals of the 2008 Olympic Games (2-3) and taking a serious option for a semi-final berth.
Match Facts (Australia v. Spain):
> Glenn Turner (AUS) netted his fifth goal this tournament, to help Australia well on their way to a ninth successive WC semi-final berth.
> Luke Doerner (AUS) is now on 6 (PC) goals at Delhi 2010, as is Taeke Taekema (NED).
> The Australian record for most goals in a World Cup tournament is 12 by Ian Cooke in 1978 and Jay Stacy in 1998.
> Ramon Alegre became the first Spanish player to be shown a yellow card this tournament.
> Spain who were in the semi-finals in two of the last three WC tournaments (2006 and 1998) will find it extremely hard to reach the last four at Delhi 2010 with six points from four matches.
> Spain failed to convert any of the eight PCs awarded to them in this match.