It was a match-up that immediately caught the Kookaburras' attention.
Australia v Japan on day one of the Tokyo Olympics.
The world was different when the schedule was announced in November 2019. Australia immediately started preparing for a hostile atmosphere, a packed Oi Hockey Stadium full of screaming Japanese fans.
Fast forward 20 months and much has changed. There will be no spectators in attendance, the athletes to instead play in empty arenas.
Despite the lack of fans, Australia are still wary of Saturday's clash with a side determined to start their home Games in winning fashion.
"Host nations throw a lot of money at sport in the build-up to an Olympics and all of a sudden they do very well," Blake Govers said.
"This Japanese team has been building strongly since Rio, with their funding and developing players.
"The hardest thing for us is we don't know much about them. We haven't played too much against them. They haven't played in Europe, where we've got a lot of information about those countries.
"We don't know what they'll look like and what structures they're playing. That means it's a case of worrying about what we need to do, being able to adapt to what they throw at us.
"That's something the Kookaburras previously haven't really done. It's great for us to have coaching staff with the trust to change our game plan during the match."
The Kookaburras clash with Japan is followed by a match against India on Sunday night, while the Hockeyroos launch their campaign against Spain on Sunday.
Govers is joined in the men's team by Wollongong's Flynn Ogilvie, with Gerringong's Grace Stewart eyeing gold with the women.
Both sides are desperate to top their pool, having been crippled by an early hiccup at the Rio Olympics.
The Kookaburras group includes New Zealand, Spain, Japan, India and Argentina.
The Hockeyroos will take on Argentina, China, Japan, New Zealand and Spain in the round-robin phase.
"Our pool is very interesting," Govers said. "With the rankings, we'll have a hard time with the knockout games.
"If you don't finish top of the pool you get a high-ranked team in the knockout rounds. That's what happened at Rio, it was world No.1 v world No.2 in the quarter-final. That goes to show how important the round games are in finishing top of your pool.
"But also, at the end of the day, you have to beat everyone, whether it be a quarter-final, semi-final or gold-medal match. For us it doesn't matter who we play, we can't control what happens in the other pool. We can only control what we can control - and knock them all out as we go along."
While Ogilvie will make his Olympic debut in Tokyo, Govers was present for the disappointing Rio showing.
The result continued a lean run for the Kookaburras, the side winning just one gold medal - Athens in 2004.
Govers is confident he's a much-improved player today and is eager to use the lessons of 2016 to lead the team to the top of the podium.
"One of the biggest things I learnt was managing the game and being able to adapt from game to game,'' he said.
"It's super important we're not predictable and we can perform when it matters. There's no point performing in practice matches."