MOLLYMOOK’S Kalindi Commerford and her Hockeyroos flew out on Monday for Changzhou, China PR, to compete at the last-ever FIH Champions Trophy against the world’s best women’s Hockey teams from November 17-25.
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World number three Australia will come up against hosts China (ranked 11th), defending champions Argentina (fourth), Olympic champions Great Britain (second), world number one Netherlands and the invited Japan (14th).
The Hockeyroos’ first Champions Trophy match is against Argentina on Saturday, November 17 from 7pm (AEDT).
This Champions Trophy will be the last-ever edition of the event which has run since 1978 before next year’s introduction of the new FIH Pro League which starts in January.
The tournament will mark the Hockeyroos’ final matches for the calendar year, having finished fourth at the World Cup in August and a silver medal at the Commonwealth Games in April.
Hockeyroos coach Paul Gaudoin said the side was aiming to win the Champions Trophy but also expose his players with a long-term view to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
“We’re certainly looking at taking a team to try to win the Champions Trophy but also with an eye on Tokyo and developing our squad,” Gaudoin said.
“We’re looking to expose some new athletes to the international arena too.”
The Hockeyroos have enjoyed a solid 10-day training block following the team announcement on November 1 where the selectors named three uncapped players in Rebecca Greiner, Greta Hayes and Penny Squibb.
The updated FIH World Rankings will be released following the Champions Trophy, while selectors will name their national senior women’s squad for 2019 in December too.
“We’re trying to keep an eye on what sort of group we want to pick for next year,” Gaudoin said.
“We want to identify the right athletes who’ll help us prepare for 2020.
“We get the opportunity to expose some new athletes.
“We need to keep evolving and developing our group.”
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