The final match of the day and the preliminary round overall was the clash between Olympic champions Australia and Pakistan.
The match could no longer change who was to go into which playoff but was going to determine who played who in the crossover matches.
With a win, Australia was going to overtake Spain for the table lead and a crossover against Korea, while a draw or defeat would have kept the Kookaburras in second place in the standings to face Germany in the other semi-final.
Pakistan on the other hand would have needed a win to avoid the Netherlands in their crossover in the 5-8 playoff and play England instead.
The Greenshirts never even came close today though, Australia dominating the match from minute one and pretty much all the way through.
The best chances for Pakistan were about a dozen penalty corners in the course of the match, always dangerous with the sport’s all time top scorer Sohail Abbas on the field, but today he could not get past the Australian defense. Australian goalkeeper Stephen Mowlam in particular made some spectacular saves.
The Australians made better use of their penalty corners, Bevan George netting on two occasions, while Jamie Dwyer added a field goal late in the first half to give the Kookaburras three goals in this match.
Australia first scored in the 13th minute from their first penalty corner of the match. Troy Elder flicked a hard ball that was valiantly saved by Salman Akbar who was vital for his side in keeping today’s score line as low as it ended up to be.
On this occasion however, the ball fell to Bevan George who wasted no time in pushing it in for the 1:0 lead.
The Pakistanis subsequently pushed forward to get back into the match but found no way past the world number one.
The Aussies had scores of chances in the remainder of the first half but only scored once more, from a brilliant solo effort of Jamie Dywer. Dwyer went into the circle from the right, outplayed three Pakistani defenders and flicked the ball past Akbar’s far shoulder from an impossibly narrow angle.
The second half started much as the first had ended, Australia dominating the proceedings, controlling ball possession, and creating heaps of chances but unable to convert any.
Half of the second half had passed already when the Kookaburras were finally able to pile on a third goal. In much the same manner as the first goal, it came from a penalty corner that was saved with the ball falling to Bevan George who put it away on the rebound.
Late in the game, Pakistan became stronger, controlled ball possession better, and had more circle penetrations but all their efforts were in vain, they could not get on the scoreboard.
Overall it was a deserved win for Australia who easily could have scored several more goals. Pakistan played a good game but were no match for the supreme Australians today – they might have come closer had Sohail Abbas been more successful in his specialty discipline.
With this match, the semi-finals are now decided: Australia will be playing Korea on Friday at 17.30, while Germany face Spain at 20.15.