Poor umpiring puts Varsity on back foot

2010-06-03 00:00

POOR umpiring has set KZN Super League men’s hockey leaders Maritzburg Varsity on the back foot somewhat, after they were shaded 4-3 by their Howard College campus rivals in a table-topping showdown.

“It was frustrating,” campus administrator Reggie Smith told The Witness. “The team did not play their best and some players must sharpen up, but we still played well enough to get a better result.”

Smith said Durban Varsity competed for every ball, yet PMB controlled most of the game but were not effective in turning possession into scoring opportunities.

“We also had a large number of poor decisions against us. The umpiring was definitely not up to the standard of the hockey played and it got to our players.”

Durban Varsity were more effective in taking chances and Tiegan Mulholland’s winner with two minutes left came against the run of play. Durban’s Kevin Demartinis impressed with well placed overheads that were not well managed by PMB’s defence.

PMB’s goals were scored by Karl Oftebro (short corner), the returning Gavin Jelley — who netted with a far-post deflection after a superb Craig Haley run and pass — and Dalan Phillips who made a top-class deflection from top of the circle into the top corner.

PMB players who performed included Duzo Khanyile, Oftebro, Phillips, Jethro Eustice and Tommy Hammond.

PMB Varsity, essentially the KZN Inland provincial team, are focusing on winning Super League and building for IPT. They lead second-placed Durban Varsity by a 16- goal-difference margin, both on 12 points after five matches. Riverside I are third, three points behind with a game in hand. Fourth are Pinetown, followed by Rovers, PMB Collegians, Riverside II and Toti.

PMB Collegians drew 1-1 with Rovers.

Said Collegians’ Leo Quayle, “It was a positive given that the in-form Grant Christie and leading goalscorer Gift Buys were out with hamstring injuries. Michael Craig was unavailable, further depleting the midfield. Mike Allan and Darryn Mitchell played well in their debut appearances.”

Collegians defenders Richard Snowdon and Rob Gee, goalkeeper Ian Griffiths, and Musa Ncobo and Dumi Mngwando stood out. A goal down, Quayle drove past the post-man to put Collegians 1-1 from a penalty corner, a half-time score that remained unchanged in a hard-fought game that could have gone either way.

Riverside I, who had a bye along with Pine­town, welcome SA defender Lloyd Madsen, who has been playing for Pinoke in the Dutch Hoofdklasse. He confirmed to The Witness yesterday he has switched allegiance from DUT Rovers.

Riverside I lead the women’s league, four goals ahead of the unbeaten Rovers I. PMB Collegians are third with Durban Collegians fourth, PMB Varsity fifth, Durban Varsity sixth and Rovers and Riverside’s second sides bringing up the rear.

Collegians and Rovers were in a match of high intensity, hard tackles and contested ball. Rovers went 1-0 into the break.

Said Lyndal Robertson, “In the second half, Collegians had their chances, with Tayla Brown having a superb shot at goal only to be deflected back into play by the post.

“Robyn Pearson also had a solid strike, only to be mistakenly deflected out of the box by a team-mate. … it just did not go our way this time.”

Collegians keeper Phum Mbande was their best player in a 4-0 defeat.

PMB Varsity were unluckily edged 2-1 by Durban Collegians.

“Varsity were the better team and controlled play with good ball movement,” said Smith. “The girls just never took their chances. A penalty stroke to equalise went astray, but Kara Stella had a good game nevertheless, as did Sade Simons, Eloise Miskey and Kirsty Scott.”

Indications are that with Darryn Gallagher as coach this might well be the best prepared KZN Inland IPT side in years.

PMB Varsity’s mini-hockey on Saturdays from 9 am to 11 am is scheduled to begin soon and interested children can be registered with Reggie Smith at smithreg@ukzn.ac.za or 082 578 0840.

RESULTS

KZN Super League — Men: Durban Varsity 4 PMB Varsity 3; Toti 2 Riverside II 2; Maritzburg Collegians 2 Rovers I 2. Women: Riverside I 3 DBN Var 0; Rovers I 4 Maritzburg Collegians 0; Rovers II 1 Riverside II 0; DBN Coll 2 PMB Varsity 1.

Inland Premier — Women: Collegians A 4 Country Districts 0; Varsity A 7 Collegians B 0; Standard A 3 Varsity B 0. Men: Collegians II 5 Country Districts 1.

FIXTURES

Sunday — Super League: Men — Queensmead: Ptn v PVar (12.30); R’side I v Rov I (14.00); Toti v PColl (15.30). Riverside: R’side II v Dvar (8.00); Rov II v PColl (9.30).

Women — Queensmead: R’side II v DColl (8.00); DVar v PVar (9.30); R’side I v Rov I (11.00).

Inland Premier (all ABJ): Friday — Women: CD’s v Coll B (19.15). Saturday — Std A v Coll A (16.00). Inland Challenge (ABJ): Sunday — Men: CD’s v Var II (15.30).

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