On Africa Day there was a celebration of African hockey as SuperGroup South Africa and Namibia took each other on in the second test at Randburg Astro. After winning the opening game 1-0, the hosts were looking to entertain the crowd and seal the series.
Namibia employed the same game plan that had worked effectively in the opening game by defending with all 11 players behind the ball, while for large periods of time South Africa shifted the ball looking for gaps in the defence. They were also looking to build on the combinations and try a few new things ahead of the FIH Open Series Finals in Spain in June.
South Africa took a 1-0 lead through a superb tomahawk strike by Lilian du Plessis in the first chukka but had to wait nearly 50 minutes for the second when Tarryn Glasby diverted the ball through Petro Stoffberg’s legs. That touch by Glasby was imperative to beat the Namibian keeper.
SuperGroup South Africa, playing in their reverse white Grays South Africa kits, were hardly troubled throughout the game, keeping Namibia down to one early chance with neither Mmatshepo Modipane or Phumelela Mbande in goal having to make any saves.
Tonight, the teams will play for the third game and the South Africans will look to be a little more lethal in front of the goals, as they left far too many opportunities out on the turf. There will be many positives for van Ginkel already with Celia Evans return from injury that saw her miss the FIH world Cup, a massive highlight alongside the form of Kristen Paton and Lilian du Plessis.
The third and final test between the women’s side is at Randburg Astro at 19:30 and will be live streamed by Shoott South Africa through their Facebook Page.
Image - Robert Swanepoel / Run Ride Dive - Not for reuse