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SA seal hockey series

A 4-2 win in Glasgow on Wednesday gave South Africa an unbeatable 2-0 lead in the five-Test women’s hockey series being played between the two countries.

The world’s 12th-ranked side, the Investec South Africa side came through after scores were 1-1 at half-time in a hot-tempered third Test.

The win gave South Africa, who have sealed their spot at the London Olympics later this year, an unbeatable lead over 18th ranked Scotland after the first Test was a 2-2 draw with the second international going 2-1 to South Africa.

The SA goals went to Kathleen Taylor, Jen Wilson, Tarryn Bright and Sulette Damons while Scotland scored through Sam Judge and Nikki Kidd.

In the third minute umpire Tim Hart allowed play to continue and Taylor finished with a reverse-stick strike into the far corner.

SA were moving the ball at pace in a very physical, high-tempo match that they dominated, but Scotland equalised midway through the first half after winning a highly controversial penalty corner that the South Africans contested vigorously; all to no avail as Judge’s well-struck shot evaded a diving Sanani Mangisa in goal, the ball deflecting cruelly off a defender’s stick.

Soon after the re-start Kidd put Scotland 2-1 up via a PC that went past replacement keeper Mariette Rix who appeared to be unsighted by the traffic in front of her before SA equalised with an excellent far-post deflection by Wilson.

Dirkie Chamberlain, the excellent Marsha Marescia and Wilson were unfortunate not to get more goals while Scotland also came close a few times, but Bright and Damons made certain of South Africa’s 4-2 victory with excellent strikes.

Scotland rested influential captain Linda Clement and outstanding goalkeeper Amy Gibson, who was replaced by Nicki Cochrane on debut, and she had a brilliant match.

As in the first two Tests, SA were missing world record goalscorer Pietie Coetzee and fellow double Olympian Kate Woods, who are scheduled to join the team Thursday for the fourth and fifth Tests, as well as striker Lauren Penny (shoulder injury), while Scotland were missing their four Great Britain Olympic squad members, as well as Clement and Gibson.

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