5-4! That was the result of all three games on the final day of the 2019 WFC Qualifications in the AOFC group. The overall winner was Australia beating Japan in overtime in a thrilling game.
In the match for 5th place, Malaysia came back from 0-3 down in the first period to overcome New Zealand, while in the 3rd place game Thailand just held out Singapore for the win. Thailand and Singapore have a busy year ahead as they will compete at the SEA Games in late November in Philippines and will then travel directly to Switzerland for the World Championships. At the SEA Games they will face some very tough opposition from Malaysia and Philippines, two countries who have shown fantastic improvement over the last year.
The final was, as expected, a very tight game. Australia and Japan matches are traditionally tough battles and today was no different. The Japanese team has always been know for their speed but that is now combined with a big improvement in their overall technical skills, making them very dangerous. Australia still have a lot of players who come from playing field hockey and their technique is not always so perfect but combined with physical strength and strong determination it was enough to get the win today. They showed good mental strength to stand up to Japan’s late attack in the game and both teams will be looking to make a good mark at WFC 2019.
Final standings were:
- New Zealand
A very big thank you to our hosts, Thailand Floorball and Thailand Hockey Association, and the President of AOFC and Thailand Floorball, Mr Dato’ Seri Chaiyapak Siriwat.
Match reports for all games, standings and player statistics can be found here
Full match replays can be seen on IFF YouTube Channel 1