Australia won the 2009 Hamburg Masters tournament over the weekend with wins over England and Germany in consecutive days. After defeating England 5-2 on Saturday, the game against Germany was effectively turned into the tournament final when they beat the Netherlands 5-3 in their second match. With two close losses under our belts in practice matches against the Olympic champs earlier in the week, we were very keen to make amends on a bigger stage.
We started off very well against Germany, leading 3-0 at half time. The host nation managed to pull it back to 3-2 and suddenly the tournament could have gone either way, particularly when considering the fact that Germany only needed a draw to win the trophy as they had a superior goal difference. The Kookaburras once again pulled away however, and goals to Mark Paterson (2), Luke Doerner, Simon Orchard, Eddie Ockendon and Jamie Dwyer gave us a 6-2 victory. Jamie also won the player of the tournament award to cap off a very successful day for the team.
We now head to Nottingham for the final leg of our trip and two more games against England. I am really looking forward to this part of the tour as it will be the first time I have been back to England since I played a season for Sheffield University Bankers in 2001-02. I had a wonderful time playing there and credit a significant part of my development as a player to the experiences I had in the Northern Premier League. I am particularly looking forward to seeing some of the boys I played with in the team for the first time in seven years. No doubt they will be cheering on the opposition in this instance but it will be great to catch up all the same.