The Kookaburras’ winning run at the Tokyo Games has continued with a 4-2 men’s hockey victory over New Zealand on Wednesday.
Tim Brand scored twice before turning provider and setting up Blake Govers’ sixth goal of the Olympic tournament.
Tom Wickham sealed matters three minutes from time as Australia turned their dominance into goals.
Kane Russell had earlier levelled from a first-quarter penalty corner and his second gave New Zealand a late consolation.
For the first Olympic Games since 1988, the @Kookaburras have won their opening four matches!
— 7Olympics (@7olympics) July 28, 2021
Australia came into the contest having beaten New Zealand in the Pro League and a series of exhibition matches in June.
There was also a feeling of familiarity on the field with Jeremy Hayward part of the Australia defence and his brother Leon in the Black Sticks’ goal.
Australia began like a side who had scored 17 goals in their first three games and were ahead inside eight minutes.
Govers stripped Russell near the touchline to find Brand with a delightful reverse pass.
Brand’s cool slot inside the far post underlined his finishing prowess.
What a win!
The @Kookaburras score three times in the last quarter to claim a deserved victory.
— Kookaburras (@Kookaburras) July 28, 2021
New Zealand rallied and Russell equalised with a superb drag flick in to the top corner of Andrew Charter’s net.
Charter came to Australia’s rescue to deny Russell from another penalty corner and the goalkeeper was also alert to kick away Sean Findlay’s effort.
Leon Hayward was also up to the task at the other end, stopping Daniel Beale twice from close range.
Australia upped the tempo in the second half and Leon Hayward diverted his brother’s fierce strike on to the goal frame.
The Kookaburras’ pressure told when Aran Zalewski and Jacob Whetton combined for Brand to claim his fourth goal of Tokyo 2020.
Govers and Wickham also got in on the scoring act to ensure Russell’s carbon-copy second was no more than a consolation.
The Kookaburras complete their Pool A fixtures against Spain on Friday.