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Great win against China for SA women

South Africa

The South African women’s hockey team delivered one of its best performances ever to beat China 4-2 in the Cape Town Summer Series on Sunday.

The team really needed a good result after the disappointing performance against Chile last week and then losing 2-5 in the second match against China. They got just that as goals from Lisa-Marie Deetlefs (2), Bernadette Coston and Candice Manuel secured a convincing win for the South Africans.

South Africa started the match like a house on fire with a goal by Deetlefs in the first minute. The score was tied at 1-1 after the first quarter and at halftime after Chinese captain Qianqain Boa had equalised. With the start of the last quarter the scores were still tied with two goals apiece after another goal from a penalty corner by Deetlefs and another by Boa.

When Coston got a goal with eight minutes left the Hartleyvale crowd started to believe that they are going to see an upset. China kept the pressure on the South African defence, but captain Nicolene Terblanche led by example to keep China a-begging. Local player Candice Manuel had the supporters out of their seats when she got the goal with one minute left to make sure South Africa won the match.

This was the performance local supporters have been looking for since the start of the Summer Series. Fans got to see glimpses in the first week, but except for the first match against Chile – who are 23rd on the world rankings – the results haven’t been going South Africa’s way. This time around the players did not only create chances, but converted the aggressive play into penalty corners and goals. Three of the four goals came from penalty corners.

The defence was also strong and no silly mistakes were made or easy goals conceded. The fact that the team have been training together for a few weeks now showed.

China are eighth on the world rankings and SA 14th.

The next matches in the series are on Monday when both the South African men and women’s sides take on Belgium. The women will get the action going at 6pm and the men will play at 8pm.

The series comes to an end on Friday.

Meanwhile the national men’s hockey team lost the third and final test match against the Netherlands but the players will do themselves a favour if they just focus on the first 30 minutes because it was in this half that the team showed what they are capable off.

Holland won 5-1 but for the first 30 minutes the South Africans did exactly what their captain Tim Drummond wanted from them – they defended strongly and were much more aggressive on the attack.

The local team’s radar was a bit off target, with many shots at goal going wide. The positive aspect is that they created chances and played positive hockey. In the second half Drummond and his men mostly defended after the visitors scored 30 seconds before halftime.

South Africa’s goal came late in the match courtesy of a penalty corner converted by Daniel Bell. while the Dutch goals were scored by captain Bob de Voogd, Glenn Schuurman, Rik van Kan, Jip Janssen and Thierry Brinkman

Holland are third on the world rankings and South Africa 15th. It was Jonty Robinson’s 100th game for his country while youngster Siyavuya Nolutshungu made his debut for South Africa.

Picture in an earlier match in the series is South Africa’s Quanita Bobbs. Picture courtesy of Outsider Communications


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