Jacob Anderson fired a superb hat-trick as Australia hammered Great Britain 6-1 to book their place in the final of hockey’s Pro League Grand Final in the Netherlands on Friday.
Australia has set-up and intriguing Quarter-Final clash with the Netherlands after a dominant 9-0 victory over Brazil.
While a result against the World’s 30th best team was never in doubt, the Kookaburras’ win ensured they would avoid running into Germany first up.
As well as having a far better record against the Dutch, including their 6-1 win in the 2014 World Cup final, it was the Germans who ended Australia’s charge four years ago in London.
For now though, Graham Reid’s men were firmly focused on getting the job done against the host nation.
And what a breath of fresh air it was.
Australia started the match with none of the nervous energy that had marred their previous matches and were quick to expose one of the Brazilians’ many weaknesses, their feet.
Blake Govers, who has endured a wayward Games so far, missed his first penalty corner but would get his chance from the 13 corners yet to come for the Aussies.
Fittingly it was Jamie Dwyer who opened the scoring seven minutes in, edging the ball past Brazilian keeper Rodrigo Faustino after a clever ball was played into the circle.
Just over a minute later he had his second, the veteran getting on the end of a centring pass from Daniel Beale and flicking it home on his reverse.
Matthew Gohdes joined the party with a superb tomahawk shot from the top of the circle as the Australians started to find a groove that had been sorely lacking in previous matches.
Five minutes into the second term and striker Glenn Turner finally got on the scoresheet, getting down on all fours to force the ball past Faustino and a defender.
After having a goal cheekily poached by Jacob Whetton against Great Britain, Turner will feel relived after what has been a frustrating tournament for Australia’s attack.
Turner wasn’t finished yet however as he added two more to complete a seven-minute hat-trick. His two deflections proving that when it rains, it truly does pour.
Up by six at half-time the Kookaburras turned it down a few notches as they looked ahead to the knock-out stages, avoidance of injuries being the chief concern.
Matty Dawson opened his account with a vicious flick off a corner and was joined towards the end of the third quarter by Govers, who finally got his flick on target and past Faustino.
Brazil however, perhaps determined to put on a show at what surely will be their last major tournament in the foreseeable future, stepped it up a few gears during the last 15 minutes.
Faustino made a number of brilliant saves, denying a Chris Ciriello thunderbolt and a cracking Whetton tomahawk as the crowd got behind their heroes.
The men in lime-green found themselves embarking on more than a few counter-attacks but were never going to get past the Australian defence led by the daunting Mark Knowles.
Govers got his second with just under two minutes to play, getting in on the keeper’s pads to tuck home a rebound and bring the score to 9-0.
Australia are now in sudden death and will need to lift their game considerably to get past the Oranje, who finished runner-up to Germany in Pool B.