Hockey coach Oltmans rues Indian's defensive lapses against Australia
"Australia scored four times from five circle penetrations, which does not reflect well out on our defence," said Oltmans after Australia beat India 5-1 at the Sultan Azlan Shah hockey. (Getty Images)
Ipoh, Malaysia: Indian men's hockey team's chief coach Roelant Oltmans has expressed his disappointment over the indifferent performance of his defenders in the 1-5 loss to World champions Australia in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh, Malaysia, on Thursday.
The Indian defence crumbled under the impact of Australia's robust raids in the round-robin league encounter.
"Australia scored four times from five circle penetrations, which does not reflect well out on our defence," said Oltmans ruing that the Indian defenders did not combine well enough.
Blake Govers opened the scoring for Australia with a fifth-minute penalty corner conversion, but India shot back to equalise within three minutes through Rupinder Pal Singh's low drag flick from their first penalty corner.
After that it was a one-way traffic with Australia pumping in four field goals to expose the Indian defence.
Jacob Whetton (13th minute), Eddie Okkenden (20th), Simon Orchard (25th) and Matt Ghodes (53rd) made entries on the score sheet, while Indians failed to convert a few chances that came their way.
This was Australia's first outing in the round-robin league, while India had won their opening fixture against Japan 2-1 on Wednesday.
India paid dear for allowing Australia plenty of opportunities to move inside the circle.
"I am not satisfied with the performance today. Our defenders did not gel well," said Oltmans.
"On the other end, we had a few chances that we failed to convert," said the Indian coach, who has fielded several youngsters from the 33-player talent pool to assess them ahead of picking the squad for the Rio Olympics.
Australian captain Mark Knowles too was not very pleased with the way his team played.
"The scoreline is flattering, but not our game today," said Knowles, whose team is seeking to extend their eight-title record at the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup and reclaim the title they lost to New Zealand last year.
The Black Sticks prevailed in a penalty shootout to win the title after the final against Australia ended in a draw.
"We did not create as many chances as we do in the most matches," said Knowles.
"India had equal number of opportunities, but our finishing was better," said the Australian captain.