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Spirited Great Britain beaten by Australia at 2024 World Championships

Great Britain’s women were beaten 20-8 by Australia in the round of 16 of the World Aquatics Championships in a game which they will take a lot from going forward.

Australia – who’s lowest ever finish at a World Championships is eighth – showed their experience throughout the contest as they battled past a spirited Great Britain side at the Aspire Dome in Doha.

Great Britain played their part and scored some spectacular goals but in the end the former Olympic champions were just too strong for Nick Buller’s side.

Australia started aggressively and managed to find themselves in front inside the opening minute when lethal forward Tilly Kearns created some space to turn and fire past Sophie Jackson from close range.

That was the first of six unanswered goals to start the match which including two penalties and two long range efforts before Great Britain began to settle into the match-up.

Buller’s side ended the quarter strongly when Toula Falvey fired an incredible back hand effort to get GB on the board with the only goal in the final two minutes of the opening period.

That goal led to a bright start to the second quarter where captain Kathy Rogers fired in from distance before a snapshot from Katy Cutler reduced the deficit to just three.

Those goals just seemed to click the Australian’s back into gear however as they reasserted their advantage to close out the first half with a 12-3 lead.

‘Learning a lot and moving forward’

Alex Robinson made a couple of smart saves to start the third period where another great long range strike from Brooke Tafazolli saw Great Britain take their total to four. That effort meant that the City of Manchester athlete keeps up her record of netting in each match of the World Championships so far.

The British side continued fighting and learning as the game went on as they drew 4-4 in the final period. Long range efforts from Lily Turner and Cutler added to the British tally before a well worked goal saw Great Britain end the game on a high thanks to a last second strike from Lotte Van Wingerden

But it was Australia who were too strong in the end as they ran out 20-8 winners in Qatar.

Speaking after the match, GB forward Toula Falvey – who netted twice in the match – said: “Today was a tough game that’s for sure but we can take a lot from this game, learn from our mistakes and move forward.

“We have two more games left in this tournament and we want to bring it and give it our all to prove how we can play on this world stage.”

The result means that Australia move onto the quarter finals to face the United States of America whilst Great Britain will go into the 9-12 place playoffs.

The semi-final of the 9-12 place matches take place on Monday 12 February where Great Britain are set to face an impressive China side at 9am UK time. They’ll then take part in their final classification match on Wednesday.

All the details of how to watch and follow the remainder of Great Britain’s fixtures in Doha can be found here.

Image: World Aquatics