THE HAGUE: England’s men suffered their first defeat of the 2014 Hockey World Cup after going down 5-0 against Australia at the Kyocera Stadium – leaving their semi-final hopes in the balance.
Having won two and drawn one of their opening three Group A games, England were outclassed in parts by the Kookaburras, who booked their place in the last four with victory.
Australia set about their business inside just 25 seconds as Matt Gohdes scored the second-fastest goal of this year’s World Cup.
Soon after, a good initial save from George Pinner was not enough to prevent Liam De Young converting the rebound to make it 2-0.
Jamie Dwyer scored Australia’s third before they extended their lead in the dying seconds of the first half courtesy of a superb volley from Kieran Govers.
Australia increased their lead early in the second half through Aran Zalewski but Pinner showed his class late on with a number of fine saves to keep the score down.
England now need to beat Belgium on Monday to secure a place in the semi-finals.