Qualified! Hockeyroos and Kookaburras confirmed for the 2024 Paris Olympics

Hockey fans were quick to deliver messages of praise for both hockey teams which have now jointly qualified for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games. Source: Getty Images

It was a tremendous weekend for Australian sports fans as the Kookaburras and Hockeyroos secured wins at the Oceania Cup in New Zealand to qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

This after Saturday’s nail biting Matilda’s win against France in the FIFA Women’s World Cup quarter final. The Australian women’s water polo side, the Aussie Stingers, also qualified for the games after defeating New Zealand 2-0 in the Oceania Olympic Qualifiers.

On Sunday, August 13 the Australian men’s hockey team clinched a 3-1 win over New Zealand which gave them a 2-1 series win over the Black Sticks.

The hotly contested clash saw two rapid goals from the Kookaburras in the first quarter. Under pressure from the Aussies, the home side stepped up their defensive efforts and scored in the second quarter. The game intensified with a yellow card for New Zealand’s Sean Findlay providing an opening for Australia to ramp up the pressure. The Black Sticks held their own until the 55th minute when the Kookaburras managed to convert a penalty corner to take the score to 3-1.

In a post-match interview, triumphant captain Aran Zalewski said, “I’m still riding the emotion from the game.”

“New Zealand had a lot of momentum coming into today. We had to fight to arrest that momentum back and the Black Sticks kept coming, so I’m really proud of the boys and how we managed to keep the scoreboard in our favour.”

Later in the day, the undefeated Australian women’s side also beat New Zealand 3-2 in Whangarei to secure the women’s series 2-0.

Known for fast, attacking hockey only a loss by three goals or more in the final match could prevent the Hockeyroos from clinching the series. Knowing they needed quick, early goals New Zealand came out swinging with a lucky shot that deflected off an Aussie defender’s stick, finding the back of the net in the fourth minute.

Undeterred the Hockeyroos upped the ante and just after half-time had put points on the board with three explosive goals from Brooke Peris, Grace Stewart and Courtney Schonell. The contest intensified in the second half when an attempt from the home side’s Megan Hull was touched home by teammate Hope Ralph’s stick to take the score to 3-2.

Impervious to the Black Sticks escalated attack attempts the Hockeyroos held their lead up to full-time.

Reflecting on their victory, a very happy Peris said, “We’re over the moon. I’m so proud of the girls…we played so deadly today.”

“We knew the Black Sticks were going to come out hard and we just stuck to our processes and got the job done,” she concluded.

Hockey fans were quick to deliver messages of praise for both hockey teams which have now jointly qualified for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games.

“Bring on Paris 2024. Work hard and you’ll reap the awards. Go Aussie,” one fan wrote.

“Fantastic effort to both teams. A well deserved qualification for Paris.”

“Congratulations well done Kookaroos,” commented another.

“Thanks for coming to little old Whangarei…was great to fly the Australian flag and witness some awesome hockey….. thanks from an Australian who still playing hockey…”

“Congratulations. Everyone time to go win Gold.”



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