Top-class goals for title victors

2008-05-25 00:00

Western Province put in a polished performance to win their third successive Spar Inter-provincial women’s hockey title when they beat a brave Southern Gauteng 3-0 in the final at Queensmead in Durban on Saturday afternoon.

WP captain Kate Hector and coach Wayne Denne had the look of a job well done after the match.

"It was a professional, mature effort and the girls stuck to the game plan," said Denne.

Hector said: "It’s about a team believing in their plan and having the patience to see it through".

Denne paid tribute to the WP team: "The side bought into my coaching and, trust me, they backed me all the way".

Marsha Marescia, Southerns skipper and player of the final, paid tribute to her side: "The girls stuck to their guns and gave it everything — I couldn’t have asked for more".

"I am glad we made it an exciting final and well done to WP. They came at us hard and it took three top-class goals to beat us,’ said Southerns coach Lindsey Wright.

"I said to my players they must keep a piece of this final in their heart and come back next year. They had to lift their standard against a team of national players and they showed they can reach that standard. Most important, too, is the fact my team have loved the week’s hockey, had a whole lot of fun and enjoyed the experience."

WP controlled the final from the outset, but Southerns defended brilliantly and were still in with a shout of a massive upset until their shield was finally pierced with 15 minutes left. An accurate Cindy Brown free-hit was pounced on by Jenna Cunliffe, who shot high into the net (1-0).

Not two minutes later a controversial free-hit was awarded to WP just outside the Southerns circle. Top IPT goalscorer (11) Henna du Buisson received the pass and from an acute angle launched a stunning reverse-stick shot into the Southerns net.

And with six minutes to the whistle, it was, fittingly WP, captain Kate Hector who delivered the last thrust with a drag flick from her province’s eighth penalty corner after Taryn Hosking pushed out and steady Lenise Marais trapped the ball.

The entire WP line-up delivered the goods in a thoroughly professional performance and they were full value for their victory.

The feeling after the final and with Hector having accepted the trophy from Saha president Dave Carr with Spar’s Wendy Kruger looking on, was that next year’s Spar Women’s IPT in Pretoria would be well worth the visit.

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