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Black Sticks pumped to take down former coach at Comm Games - 'If the boys can rub his nose in it, they'd love that!'

The men's Black Sticks are heading to the Commonwealth Games with an underlying piece of inspiration for their campaign - get a win over the coach that left them.

Colin Batch left the NZ team after four years at the helm to link up with trans-Tasman rivals, the Kookaburras, at the start of 2017.

His successor, Darren Smith, says some players haven't forgotten the move as they prepare for the Commonwealth Games.

"For me, I'm less influenced," he said.

"I didn't have as much time with Colin as the guys did but I imagine that, given he coached them for a number of years, if the boys could knock him over and rub Colin's nose in it, they'd love that!"

In Batch's four-year span from 2012 until the end of 2016 as the Black Sticks' head coach, he claimed two silvers in the 2012 and 2013 World League and took gold in the 2015 Sultan Azlan Shah Cup.

New Zealand play Australia on Wenesday 11 April in their final pool match at the Commonwealth Games.

Current NZ coach Darren Smith says his team would love to beat his predecessor, Colin Batch, who now coaches Australia. Source: 1 NEWS