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Kookaburras mark Tom Wickham's milestone with crushing win over India

Published Sat 13 Apr 2024

The Kookaburras have yet again overcome an initial deficit to win their fourth of four. The win puts them in a position to claim a Perth International Festival of Hockey series clean sweep, and send a warning to the rest of the world ahead of the Paris Olympic Games.


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As a storm brewed overhead and delayed play by half an hour, it was clear both sides were ready to play, getting off to a lightning start under the dark clouds at Perth Hockey Stadium.

Australia fast off the line didn't hold back, flying towards their goal before India gained possession and had a direct shot on target within the first minute. 

An impressive save by Kookaburras goalkeeper Johan Durst kept the scoresheet clean, until the Indian skipper Harmanpreet Singh finally broke Durst's defence, handing his side the lead for the only time in the match.

By the 19th minute, it was the Jeremy Hayward show once again, scoring off a fantastic penalty corner to see the sides level at the half-time break.

Bagging his double off another penalty corner in the fourth, Australia had all the momentum and it showed. Right before full-time Jack Welch secured the win with a powerful strike off another penalty corner and Australia erupted in cheers.

Returning from a minor injury this week, Cairns local Jayden Atkinson was grinning from ear to ear post-match.

"When you have these boys around you, they're world-class, it's very easy to slot in and we're pretty happy with the result today."

"This atmosphere is crazy it's amazing with all the kids out on the field and all the family it is honestly amazing so we cherish these moments, a lot of the boys have partners and even family over here so just playing in front of family and friends that's what we love the most."

Before his milestone, Tom Wickham addressed his side with a clear message.

"Before the game Moose asked if I had anything to say... I just said I wanted the boys to dig in and play and essentially embody how I try to play the game, which is just to leave it all out there," Wickham said post-match.

"India showed up but I think we're just bringing some real momentum out there, even when things weren't perfect we were able to keep digging in and that's what I love and it's so good we played like that on my 100th. Just so cool."

When asked about a potential clean sweep, Tom had two simple words: "Lets go!!"

The Kookaburras quest for a clean sweep in the series continues tomorrow afternoon with the final Test at 4.40pm AWST.

You can see the full Perth International Festival of Hockey schedule here.

All matches will be streamed live and free on 7Plus.

Match Details
Kookaburras: 3 (Jeremy Hayward 19', 47' & Jack Welch 54')
India: 1 (Harmanpreet Singh 12',)
At Perth Hockey Stadium

Kookaburras: 1. Lachlan Sharp, 3. Corey Weyer, 4. Jake Harvie, 5. Tom Wickham, 6. Matt Dawson, 7. Nathan Ephraums, 8. Johan Durst (gk), 9. Jacob Anderson, 11. Eddie Ockenden, 12. Jake Whetton, 15. Jayden Atkinson, 17. Aran Zalewski (c), 20. Ky Willott, 21. Jack Welch, 26. James Collins, 29. Tim Brand, 30. Andrew Charter (gk), 32. Jeremy Hayward