Kookaburras topple champs Germany to end losing run
A 2-1 defeat of Germany has restored order for Australia's men's hockey team after a poor Pro League start.
First-quarter goals to Jake Whetton and Jack Welch were enough as the Kookaburras held on for just their second win from seven games in the worldwide tournament.
It snapped a run of two losses since the side's arrival in India, which followed a disappointing home leg in Hobart that yielded just one win from four games against Spain and Argentina.
Commonwealth Games champions and Olympic silver medallists Australia have slipped from No.1 in the world to fifth after missing the medals in January's World Cup.
Germany were heartbreakers at that event, scoring twice inside the final three minutes to clinch a dramatic semi-final comeback win over Colin Batch's men.
But Kookaburras goalkeeper Johan Durst produced a fine late save to snuff out any chance of a repeat at Rourkela's Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium.
"It was a very tough game ... Germany are world champions for a reason so we're pretty happy and will come back ready to go again tomorrow," Whetton, who was named player of the match, said.
"We played a style of hockey that we are used to tonight. We put some pressure on Germany, got some reward in the attacking circle and defended really well."
Australia will play the hosts early on Thursday morning to complete their India swing, with eight games still to play on tours of New Zealand and Europe in April and June respectively.
The Kookaburras sit sixth on the Pro League ladder, while in-form leaders India have lost just one of seven games.