Rio Olympics 2016: Aussie media reaction to loss to Black Sticks

Australia's Mariah Williams pauses inside the pitch after her team lost to New Zealand. Photo / AP
Australia's Mariah Williams pauses inside the pitch after her team lost to New Zealand. Photo / AP

Australia media are describing their country's hockey campaign as a "train wreck" after the Hockeyroos was knocked out of the Rio Olympics by New Zealand's Black Sticks women's team.

Writing in Sydney's Daily Telegraph and Melbourne's Herald Sun, Jon Ralph said the Australian women's capitulation at the hands of the red-hot Black Sticks matched the men's team's unexpectedly early demise in Rio.

"Australia's train wreck of an Olympic hockey campaign is over after the Hockeyroos meekly joined their men's counterparts in a humbling quarter-final exit," Ralph told his readers.

"So much was expected of the dominant world No. 1 men and the emerging, exciting women, who had risen to No. 3 in the world.

"Yet the women's team were downed by trans-Tasman rival New Zealand in a 4-2 defeat just 16 hours after the men were stunned 4-0 by the Netherlands."

Ralph wrote that the Hockeyroos "were powerless to stop the command performance from New Zealand's Anita McLaren", who scored two goals and set up a third.

Not since the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles have neither of Australia's field hockey teams failed to win at least one medal.

Yet neither of the Australian teams could curse at the hockey gods or curse their misfortune.

Instead they were both played off the park in the quarter-final stages introduced only for the Rio Olympics.

Neither would have made the straight semi-finals of the previous Olympic formats, and that form was reflected when the cutthroat rounds arrived.

The women's side at least is a young, building team with 12 Olympic first-timers, while the Kookaburras had no excuses to crumble.

- NZ Herald

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