Insipid Pakistan thrashed by Australia in Azlan Shah Cup
IPOH: World champions Australia put on a strong showing Sunday to whip Pakistan 6-0 in the second match of the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup.
South Korea secured their first win when they defeated India 2-1 in a closely fought match, while host Malaysia kept up their winning ways to defeat defending champions New Zealand 2-1.
In a show of clinical finishing, which was helped by an insipid Pakistan team, Australia, aiming for a seventh cup title, had little trouble collecting full points to lead the standings after two days.
The world number two took the lead through Daniel Mirecki, and Matt Gohdes increased the gap with another field goal.
Goalkeeper Imran Butt proved to be a bundle of nerves. It got worse for the Pakistanis as the Australians rang up another two goals by Jacob Whetton for a 4-0 first half lead.
Daniel Beale and then Nick Budgeon completed the rout, the latter with a penalty corner goal.
Pakistan chief coach Akhtar Rasool said the players were tired and worn down by the humidity in the Southeast Asian nation. He added Butt might be replaced by Imran Shah.
“We can only improve, and hopefully the rest day (Monday) will do the team some good,” he said.
Australia’s coach Ric Charlesworth downplayed the rival’s thrashing.
Australia already beat India on Saturday.
“Beating Pakistan at any time is a welcome moment,” he said. “The big score is not that big a deal as it can happen in an international match. The next minute you may end up losing to the same team.”
Meanwhile, Kang Moon-Kweon scored twice for South Korea, while India earned their goal via Malak Singh.
India went on to waste six penalty corners in the second half through poor execution and good defending by the Koreans.
In the last match of the day, the goals came from Malaysia’s Chua Boon Huat and Ahmad Tajuddin Jalil, although the Kiwis pulled a goal back through Shay Neal.
Malaysia now rank second with six points, like the Australians, having won both their games, ahead of South Korea and Pakistan. India and New Zealand have no points so far.
The tournament ends next Sunday.