Inland let two-goal lead slip against determined EP

2010-04-28 00:00

THERE was consternation for KZN Inland supporters at the SA Under-21 Women’s Interprovincial Tournament yesterday as they let slip a two-goal advantage at the AB Jackson Greenfields Turf to eventually draw 2-2 with a never-say-die Eastern Province.

Inland vice captain Kara Stella netted a penalty corner in the second minute in an evenly contested match before she made it 2-0 with 14 minutes left via the penalty stroke route.

But EP were not done, and superb positioning at the far post resulted in a brace for Danielle Judge in the last nine minutes, the equaliser coming a minute from full-time.

Inland were guilty of holding the ball too long and lost shape, and EP were sharp enough to capitalise on space down the right.

In the match of the day at the ABJ, Western Province made vital inroads towards reaching Saturday’s final when Quanita Bobbs netted the winner against Pool A rivals KZN Coastal with 10 to go. Province’s 2-1 win, added to their last-gasp defeat of Southern Gauteng on day one, means they have got rid of two major stumbling blocks.

Coastal went 1-0 up in the seventh minute through Genevieve Barnes before Paula Dollman equalised midway through the second half. Just before half-time, Coastal striker Jacinta Jubb was denied when her slashing shot cannoned off the crossbar, while WP and SA senior goalkeeper Hanlie Hattingh made vital saves at the end.

It was a match that swung to and fro with goalmouth action at both ends, but a feature of IPTs has been the inability of teams to make the most of numerous penalty corner opportunities, most goals coming by accident rather than design.

The match of the day at Maritzburg College’s Pape’s Astro saw Pool B favourites North West shade Northerns 3-2 with a brace from Sulette Damons.

At the men’s U21 IPT in Potchefstroom, KZN Inland went down 2-0 to EP and coach Darryn Gallagher said it flattered the men from KZN.

“We were lucky it was only 2-0,” Gallagher said. “Andrew Watson was brilliant in goals. It’s a very inexperienced side and the guys are battling to cope. Our goal now is to get two wins from our last three matches and finish in the middle four.”

SA U18 manager and the master in charge of hockey at Maritzburg College, Brandon Swart, said the national juniors were 3-0 up with a quarter-hour to go against Wits, but almost slipped up.

“The guys let in two soft goals at the end, but we managed to restore a two-goal cushion before the final whistle for a 4-2 result,” Swart said.

RESULTS

Women: Wits 0 SA U18 3; Free State 6 Pens 1; North West 3 Northerns 2; Southerns 4 Namibia 0; EP 2 Inland 2; Coastals 1 WP 2.

Men – Day 2: SA U18 4 Wits 2; EP 2 Inland 0; WP 6 Border 0; Southern Gauteng 2 Northerns 1; Free State 2 Pens 1; Coastal 5 North West 0.

Men - Day 1: Northerns 2 Border 1; Wits 3 Pens 1; SA U18 3 KZN Inland 2; Southern Gauteng 2 KZN Coastal 1; WP 9 North West 0.

FIXTURES

Women (ABJ unless stated): 9 am KZN Coastal vs Namibia (MC); 9 am North West vs Wits; 11 am WP vs Pens (MC); 11 am SA U18 vs EP; 1 pm Southern Gauteng vs Free State; 3 pm Northerns vs KZN Inland.

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