During the first half of the Pool B clash between Canada and South Africa, the Africans had difficulties tofind the back of the net despite advantages in the field. A fiercely fighting Canadian team sent the match into a deadlock for much of the first 35 minutes.
A penalty corner goal for South Africa by Lilian du Plessis was quickly matched by one from open play for Canada at the hands of Priya Randhawa, and the teams headed into halftime tied at one goal each.
After the break, South Africa stepped the pace up a notch however, pulling away with an early double from Nicole Walraven.Tiffany Jones added another before Canada found their feet again and pulled one back through Stephanie Norlander.
A penalty corner goal for South Africa by Suléke Brand was matched quickly by a goal of the same kind at the other end by Holly Stewart to maintain the advantage at two goals, but Canada could not shift up a gear to get any closer. On the contrary, a last minute goal by Quanita Bobbs extended South Africa’s lead to three goals, and the match ended 6-3 for South Africa.
With this result, the girls in green and gold booked their ticket for the quarter-finals independent of the result of the match between Argentina and China being played at the same time in the main stadium, and they celebrated their success accordingly.
Voices after the match:
Izelle Lategan, team-captain South Africa: “We were a bit nervous at the beginning but I think we fought our way till the end and we can be very proud of the result. I know that the Netherlands are actually the best team, but we also know that we can fight hard. We have to make sure that we take every possible opportunity. We need a good structure.”
Hannah Haughn, team-captain Canada: “We didn’t come out as hard as we needed to. I think that South Africa really used their chances today. Playing these games here is a big experience we can take away. We need to be more skilled and to be more composed on the ball.”
Canada plays in the classification round vs. Korean Aug 1 at 12 am PST (midnight).