Star goalkeeper Rachael Lynch has been named in the Hockeyroos’ Olympic squad just months after being dumped from the contract list.
- Lynch had returned to the Hockeyroos squad for the recent Test series against New Zealand
- Georgina Morgan was left out of the Olympic squad
- Eddie Ockenden was named in the Kookaburras squad for his fourth Olympics
Lynch’s selection was among the main talking points today when the 16-player national women’s squad was announced for the Tokyo Olympics beginning next month.
She was controversially axed from the 2021 contract list late last year by then-coach Paul Gaudoin and the selection panel.
Former captain Georgina Morgan was also surprisingly omitted amid the turmoil engulfing the Hockeyroos, with players threatening to strike as a response.
Lynch and Morgan both successfully appealed their axings, but the writing was on the wall for Morgan when she missed selection for the recent four-Test series in New Zealand.
It meant Morgan was always going to miss the squad for Tokyo, but the 34-year-old Lynch — the 2019 International Hockey Federation goalkeeper of the year — performed well enough to earn selection for her second Olympics.
The Hockeyroos are ranked fourth in the world and they face a monumental task to medal in Tokyo after the most tumultuous period in their history.
Past and present players last year aired allegations of bullying, homophobic behaviour and body shaming, with a subsequent independent inquiry finding a dysfunctional culture existed within the elite women’s hockey set-up.
High performance manager Toni Cumpston quit two months before that report was handed down, while Gaudoin stood down as Hockeyroos coach on the eve of its release.
Two-time Olympic gold medallist Katrina Powell replaced Gaudoin as Hockeyroos coach.
The squad features eight Olympic debutants, including 19-year-old Amy Lawton, who will become the fourth youngest Hockeyroos player to compete at an Olympics.
Meanwhile, Kookaburras co-captain Eddie Ockenden will join Australian hockey greats such as Rechelle Hawkes, Jamie Dwyer, and Mark Knowles after being named for his fourth Olympic Games.
Ockenden, 34, is by far the most experienced member of the 16-player squad after participating in the Beijing (2008), London (2012) and Rio (2016) Games.
The Kookaburras are ranked number one in the world, but they will face a stiff challenge from the likes of Belgium, the Netherlands, India, and Germany in Tokyo.
Hockeyroos squad: Edwina Bone, Emily Chalker, Jane Claxton, Savannah Fitzpatrick, Kate Jenner, Stephanie Kershaw, Amy Lawton, Rachael Lynch, Rosie Malone, Kaitlin Nobbs, Brooke Peris, Karri Somerville, Penny Squibb, Grace Stewart, Renee Taylor, Mariah Williams
Kookaburras squad: Daniel Beale, Tim Brand, Andrew Charter, Tom Craig, Matthew Dawson, Blake Govers, Jeremy Hayward, Tim Howard, Dylan Martin, Trent Mitton, Eddie Ockenden, Flynn Ogilvie, Lachlan Sharp, Joshua Simmonds, Jake Whetton, Aran Zalewski