Kookaburras eye Irish next in last eight

THE Kookaburras will take on Ireland in the quarter-finals of the hockey World League in Antwerp after going unbeaten in the group stage.

A Chris Ciriello hat-trick in the final Pool A game helped the Aussies beat India 6-2, setting up the match against the Irish who finished on the bottom of Pool B. The two sides have met just once in the past 25 years, resulting in a 4-2 Australian win in Paris in July 2011.

Coach Graham Reid said Ireland's draw against Great Britain suggested they could present a bigger threat than most people expected.

"We haven't played Ireland too often. They're going to have something different," Reid said.

"They play a lot like Great Britain. We certainly will not be underestimating them."

The top three teams from the tournament earn automatic qualification to the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.