WAGGA product Dylan Martin and other players who missed out on Commonwealth Games selection have been urged by Kookaburras coach Colin Batch to use it as a spur to break back into the Australia squad.
Martin, part of Australia's silver medal-winning Olympic team in Tokyo last year, was a shock omission from the squad to defend its crown at Birmingham late next month.
The 24-year-old was part of Australia's recent 4-0 series win in New Zealand and has been in strong form, but has been overtaken in the pecking order.
Jake Harvey, Jacob Anderson and Nathan Ephraums are the non-goalkeeper players who have forced their way into the squad after not featuring at the Olympics.
Martin has been a mainstay of the squad since making his debut against New Zealand in June last year. He played in defence during the Olympics campaign, where Australia went down to Belgium in a penalty shootout.
The Kookaburras are currently ranked number one in the world and Batch said tough decisions to leave out quality players like Martin is a sign of their depth.
"Whenever we select a Kookaburras team there's some disappointment and it's a tough selection, and this one's no different," he said.
"No one is secure in the team, and I think we like that competition for places. I see that continuing over the next couple of years.
"There's some really good players in the team of course and some really good players that have missed out. The ones who have missed will be motivated for the future."
Martin will look to break back into the Kookaburras squad for the world cup in India next year, and the Olympics at Paris in 2024.
The Kookaburras have won gold ever since men's hockey was incepted into the Commonwealth Games in 1998, and are looking to stand atop the podium for seventh straight time in Birmingham.
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