It’s was golden finish to the Australian Country Championships in Berri for Armidale’s Ben Hanlan and Darby Chalmers.
After helping their NSW Country side, which also contained Tamworth’s Simon Massey, crush Queensland 5-nil and claim back to back titles, the pair were named in the Australian senior (Hanlan) and under-21 (Chalmers) sides.
After a goalless opening 20 minutes, NSW quickly opened up a three-goal buffer with goals from Benjamin Ferguson (24’), Michael Dillon (25’) and Luke Witchard (29’).
Nicholas Milne (52’) and Taylor Dolbel (68’) added goals in the second half to cap off a dominant tournament for NSW.
Fellow New England talents Katrina Rekunow, Brittany Parker and Brianna Sutton will also wear the green and gold with Rekunow and Parker selected in the women’s senior team and Sutton the under-21s.
Their NSW side, of which Armidale’s Tara Jane and Tamworth’s Ashley Ninness was also a part of, was again consigned to silver, Holly Gilbar’s 10th minute strike proving the difference as Queensland prevailed 1-nil.
The Australian senior teams will play at the Hawkes Bay Hockey Festival in New Zealand, while the under-21s teams will compete at the Oceania Pacific Cup in Fiji in December.
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