Two world class goals have ultimately sealed the Hockeyroos’ fate as they fell 2-0 to Argentina in Perth tonight, the victory sending the South Americans top of the FIH Pro League standings.
The Hockeyroos made eight changes from the side that was defeated by the same score line on Friday night, with recalled trio Greta Hayes, Rosie Malone and Jocelyn Bartram all impressing.
“It was a disappointing result for us because we wanted to come out firing and just didn’t do that in the first half,” said Hockeyroos captain Emily Chalker post-game.
“They had a couple of shots and scored two goals, while we had more opportunities and once again couldn’t convert so that’s something we’ll need to work on.”
The result leaves the Hockeyroos sitting in fourth position on the Pro League table, however with the number of players in the squad who were given a run across the two matches, Head Coach Paul Gaudoin selection changes point to having one eye on the Tokyo Olympics.
“The Olympics is our final goal so this (loss) is going to be a learning curve for us to put our heads down, bums up and get working,” added Chalker.
Both sides began the match in aggressive fashion and the hosts were unlucky not to earn a repeat penalty corner late in the first quarter when Malone was struck above the knee.
The deadlock was eventually broken in the 25th minute by an incredible solo goal from Victoria Granatto.
Receiving in the left-hand corner, Granatto sped towards the head of the circle and evaded four defenders before thumping home a strike past the near post.
At the other end Mariah Williams threatened to break the game open, while Hayes quietly went about producing arguably her finest performance on the international stage yet.
The third quarter saw Kate Jenner’s penalty corner strike sail inches wide of the goal, while at the other end Bartram made a clutch save.
In a seesawing final term, Chalker went close as they surged forward to find an equaliser.
But instead Argentina put the result beyond doubt as Sofia Tocalino scored a reverse stick strike from the narrowest of angles into an unguarded net.
Argentina 2 (Granatto 25’, Toccalino 59’)
@ Perth Hockey Stadium at Curtin University
Hockeyroos: 2.Rosie Malone, 3.Brooke Peris, 5.Ashlee Wells (gk), 7.Jodie Kenny, 8.Georgia Wilson, 9.Lily Brazel, 10.Madison Fitzpatrick, 11.Karri McMahon, 12.Greta Hayes, 14.Stephanie Kershaw, 15.Kaitlin Nobbs, 19.Jocelyn Bartram (gk), 20.Karri Somerville, 21.Renee Taylor, 22.Kate Jenner, 24.Mariah Williams, 26.Emily Chalker (c), 31.Laura Barden
Argentina: 2.Sofia Toccalino, 3.Agustina Gorzelany, 5.Agostina Alonso, 7.Giselle Kanevsky (c), 9.Priscila Jardel, 13.Cristina Cosentino (gk), 15.Maria Granatto, 18.Victoria Sauze, 19.Agustina Albertarrio, 21.Victoria Granatto, 22.Eugenia Trinchinetti, 23.Micaela Retegui, 28.Julieta Jankunas, 29.Victoria Miranda, 32.Valentina Costa, 38.Maria Cerundolo, 40.Maria Forcherio
Unused Substitute: 36.Mariana Scandura (gk)