Hockeyroos' pair claim bronze medal at Tokyo's Olympic test event

Hockeyroos' Kalindi Commerford celebrates a goal against China. Photo: HA
Hockeyroos' Kalindi Commerford celebrates a goal against China. Photo: HA

THE Hockeyroos, headlined by Mollymook's Kalindi Commerford and Gerringong's Grace Stewart, have finished with the bronze medal at the Olympic test event at Tokyo.

After going through their first three matches of the tournament without a win, the duo's Hockeyroos saved their best performance for last by defeating China 3-1 on Wednesday.

Commerford, Rosie Malone and Savannah Fitzpatrick all found the back of the goal in open play to secure the two-goal victory at the Japanese capital.

"The tournament for us performance wise was probably a little bit disappointing," Commerford said to Hockey Australia.

"I think the games when we had the stats in our favour we lost, but to get a win against China and play how we know we can play, was nice.

"Overall, it was good to come to Tokyo and get an insight into the temperature and also the science behind the heat to get an idea of how each individual reacts to the heat and what strategies people will need hopefully when we come back next year for the Olympics.

"Furthermore, it's pretty rare to get exposure to the Olympic pitch a year out - that's good intel moving forward in terms of what pitches we might train on in the build up to adapt."

The team will return home on Friday as attention now turns to the Oceania Cup against New Zealand, which acts the Olympic qualifiers, to be held in Rockhampton from September 5-8.

"This test event was mainly about getting an idea of what we can expect in a year's time, and when we were playing, we were always relating it back to the Kiwis because that has been our main objective all year," Commerford said.

"Our training block since we came back from our break after the Pro League has been solely focused on beating New Zealand.

"If we can implement strategies, have really specific and purposeful training, it will be good to take that onto the field in Rockhampton."

This story Hockeyroos' pair claim bronze medal in Japan first appeared on South Coast Register.