Australia expect better draw


After lodging an official protest, coach Ric Charlesworth said on Monday that he was hopeful that the Australian men’s field hockey team would receive a fairer draw at the London Olympics.
Charlesworth was furious last week when his world’s number one “Kookaburras” were handed three early morning starts in their group matches, while their main rivals Germany avoided the early timeslot altogether in the opposite group.
Hockey Australia fired in an official protest along with recommendations to the organising committee of the London Games and the International Hockey Federation (FIH).
Charlesworth said that he was optimistic of a positive outcome and expected a decision to be made this week.
“There are 10 early starts, there are 12 teams in the tournament and we got three of them. That doesn’t make any sense and I suspect there will be an adjustment,” Charlesworth told the reporters in Perth.
“I wouldn’t have been so keen to be vociferous if I didn’t think we could change it. We expect to play early games. We expect to play one or two, but we don’t expect to play three spaced over the tournament like they are. That doesn’t make any sense and it’s unfair.”
Charlesworth said that the 8.30am time slot would require players to wake up at 5am, causing a major disruption to their daily tournament routine.
Australia is strongly fancied for the gold medal in London, and has dominated the international men’s field hockey since Charlesworth took charge of the national team in 2009.