Kookaburras coach Colin Batch has added some fresh blood to the squad for 2019.Kookaburras coach Colin Batch has introduced three new players into the national squad as he ushers in a generational change in time for Tokyo 2020.
Jacob Anderson, Jack Haynes, and Jack Welch were on Wednesday included in a 27-man squad that will compete in the inaugural FIH Pro League next year.
The FIH Pro League, which replaces the current World League, will run annually between January and June and be contested between nine countries.
Batch has overseen an overhaul of the Kookaburras this year, including the retirement of former captain Mark Knowles after the Commonwealth Games.
Kieran Govers also hung up his hockey stick this week, while Jeremy Edwards was also a notable omission from the squad currently ranked No.1 in the world.
However ahead of next month’s World Cup, Anderson and Haynes enter the fold after making their Kookaburras debuts last month.
“Our 2019 squad selection is formed with a longer view to what our squad needs to look like in 2020,” Batch said on Wednesday.
“Jacob Anderson is a good striker who can play midfield. He’s come up through the junior ranks in Queensland.
“We gave him some opportunities in VAAs (Visiting Athlete Agreement) this year and in the A-Malaysia series.
“He made his debut for the Kookaburras in Darwin in September and is a good player for the future.”
Welch was also part of the VAA group and scored in just his second match.
“He was also part of the A-Malaysia series. He’s a penalty corner option and comes in with a lot of promise as a striker,” Batch said.
After looking to claim their third straight World Cup crown, the Kookaburras begin preparations for the FIH Pro League on January 14.
Their first match is against Netherlands on February 2 in Melbourne.
2019 men’s squad: Jacob Anderson, Daniel Beale, Joshua Beltz, Tim Brand, Andrew Charter, Tom Craig, Matthew Dawson, Johan Durst, Blake Govers, Jake Harvie, Jack Hayes, Jeremy Haywards, Tim Howard, Aaron Kleinschmidt, Tyler Lovell, Trent Mitton, Edward Ockenden, Flynn Ogilvie, Lachlan Sharp, Josh Simmonds, Matthew Swann, Jack Welch, Corey Weyer, Jacob Whetton, Tim Wickham, Dylan Wotherspoon, Aran Zalewski.