Australia has scraped through for a win in the first game of their European Tour, defeating Belgium 4-3.
It's a good result for the Australians who had to work hard for their win after being down 3-1 at half time, before piling on three unanswered goals in the second half - the last coming in the final seconds of the match.
Belgium started strongly, drawing a penalty corner in the second minute. A good block from Nathan Burgers though denied them a score. Seven minutes later he was unable to back it up when a defensive mix-up allowed for an easy score to the home side.
It went from bad to worse three minutes later when Belgium scored their second from the field before the Kookaburras got one back in the 20th minute when an unmarked Eglington slotted through Australia's first.
The Kookaburras had multiple opportunities in the first half, with 25 circle penetrations, but a combination of some good defense from the Belgians and rusty skills from Australia saw them go into the break with a two goal deficit after a low penalty corner flick in the 34th minute beat Burgers into the net for 3-1.
After half time the Kookaburras lifted their tempo, controlling the midfield and creating more opportunities in attack. In the 50th minute Jamie Dwyer got in on the action after pouncing on the Belgium' keeper's block to reduce the deficit to one.
With the Kookaburras coming back, Belgium stopped playing the attacking hockey that had got them into a strong position, going on the defensive, but with the momentum clearly with the Kookaburras the equalizer came in the 60th minute when Liam DeYoung trapped a rebound from the keeper and found the net for 3-3.
The score remained unchanged for the last nine minutes of the match and looked like staying that way until, with 20 second left on the clock, a Brooks' interception and pass set up Eglington in the circle who was able to fire home the winner as the whistle sounded.
"It was an unsteady start with our deep defense found wanting in the first half," said national coach, Barry Dancer.
"We had a much improved intensity in the midfield in the second half and this provided the foundation for numerous attacks in the second."
"Some good composure late in the game resulted in a very late goal to steal the win."
Source: Hockey Australia
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