The South African Hockey Women secured their place in the semi-final of the African Hockey Road to Paris 2024 Qualifier on a cold evening at Tuks Sport in Pretoria. Having beaten Zimbabwe 10-0 on the opening night the South Africans knew anything other than defeat would secure a place in the final four.
Nigeria were making their debut in the tournament having had a bye on the opening day. And they had Martha Uko to thank for keeping them in the competition in the early exchanges making fine saves from several shots, the standout being from a Jean-Leigh du Toit penalty corner that looked destined for the top corner.
South Africa finally broke the deadlock when Tarryn Lombard scored her third of the tournament showing again her attacking prowess. Having waited for 20 minutes to score the opening goal, the South Africans only waited 3 minutes for the next. Bianca Wood reacted first in the circle and absolutely smashed the ball into the back of the net to double the lead.
South Africa was unable to find another goal before the half-time break and went to the interval out of the cold with a 2-0 lead.
It was 3-0 early in the second half as the South Africans saw Celia Seerane show her experience with a cool finish. The South Africans would find one further goal near the end through Kristen Paton to make it 4-0.
The result secured a place in the final four but the team will be looking to raise their performance level on Friday in the Semi-Finals. Tuesday is a rest day before the group stage concludes on Wednesday, with the South Africans having the day off.
African Hockey Road to Paris 2024 Qualifiers (W) – Day 2 Results
Pool A – South Africa 4-0 Nigeria
Pool B – Kenya 3-2 Ghana
Pool B – Zambia 3-2 Namibia