News24

SA women qualify for Olympics

2012-02-25 18:14

New Delhi - South Africa made it to the London Olympics with a convincing 3-1 victory over India in the women's final of the Olympic qualifying tournament in New Delhi on Saturday.

South Africa, who participated in the last three Olympics as African champions, called the shots and scored through Shelley Russell (fourth minute), Pietie Coetzee (30th) and Marsha Marescia (53rd).

India, who made their lone Olympic appearance in 1980 at Moscow, scored through Jaspreet Kaur (57th) but it was too late.

South Africa, who beat India 5-2 in the league match, asserted their supremacy early in the game as Russell capitalised on a defensive lapse to beat goalkeeper Yogita Bali with a clever placement.

The visitors consolidated their position when veteran Coetzee, the world's highest scorer in international field hockey who came out of retirement in 2010, converted the third penalty-corner.

India, who hardly put pressure on the South African goal in the first-half, came across their best chance to reduce the margin in the 43rd minute but Anuradha Devi failed to beat goalkeeper Mariette Rix from close range.

South Africa virtually wrapped up the match when captain Marescia deflected in a Coetzee penalty-corner drive for a 3-0 lead.

India, cheered by a few thousand spectators, struck when Jaspreet converted a penalty-corner.

South Africa, the highest-ranked side in the current competition at 12, had already made it to the Olympics by winning the 2011 African qualifier.

But their Olympic committee decided the continental event was not competitive enough and they needed to take part in the Olympic qualifier to make it to the London Games.

In other women's matches, Alessia Doriana Padalino scored both the goals as Italy defeated Ukraine 2-1 to finish third. Bohdana Sadova found the target for Ukraine.

Canada finished fifth with a 3-0 victory over Poland, with Thea Culley, Brienne Stairs and Stephanie Jameson being the scorers.

Two more women's qualifiers will be decided after tournaments in Belgium and Japan.

Reigning champions the Netherlands, Argentina, Australia, China, Germany, Britain, South Korea, New Zealand and the United States have already made it to the main draw for women.

AFP

Comments
  • Mark Milligan - 2012-02-25 18:20

    That's great news. Well done girls.

  • Warren Carne - 2012-02-25 18:24

    A fantastic achievement,well done ladies.

  • RoadTo - 2012-02-25 18:29

    Congrats! If you support SOUTH AFRICA in all sports, you can search for “Totallympics” and join the first international forum about Olympic sports. You can discuss with people from all around the world about all sports and be always updated about Olympic Sports in the Road to London 2012. Register and make your nation’s community bigger on the forum, supporting your nation’s athletes and teams in all Olympic sports!

      Leko - 2012-02-27 11:18

      Thanks, will do so.

  • pal.mabelane - 2012-02-25 19:03

    Well done!

  • danel.kruger - 2012-02-25 19:04

    Nothing like having to qualify twice to go to the olympics, just in africa!!! Go SA GIRLS! YOU SHOWED THEM!!

  • Keith - 2012-02-25 19:04

    Congrats to the team. Graaff reinet is proud of Sulette Damons for her role in the team.

      Leko - 2012-02-27 11:19

      True Keith, people dont know that she is the brains behind that team...Union High should be vocal about this.

  • luvuko - 2012-02-25 19:19

    'South Africa.., had already made it to the Olympics by winning the 2011 African qualifier. But their Olympic committee decided the continental event was not competitive enough and they needed to take part in the Olympic qualifier to make it to the London Games.' I'm sorry... What?

      martin.gee.godfrey - 2012-02-25 19:46

      This is the same Olympic committee who, a few years ago, withdrew the SA Mens team from the Olympics because they felt that they wouldnt get a top 6 finish and it would be a waste of money. This led to an exodus of top players from the local hockey scene.

      David - 2012-02-26 09:43

      Unbelievable, how else are we supposed to build a sport with quite a large player base in this country. We need hero's like the SA mens and womens teams. Took my daughter who is an avid hockey player to the SA Hockey mens clinic given at Wanderers yesterday. They were truly awesome with the kids, giving photos and autographs afterwards before their own match prep. Well done SA Hockey.

      NickvanderLeek - 2012-02-26 10:25

      Yes I remember that FerretGee ---- Jeepers, how can sending a team to the Olympics be a waste of money? Unless you - the administrators - draw your salary from the sports budget, and of course, by going to the Olympics, there's less money in the pot to cancer away from the sport. People in authority with a conflict of interest (private interest versus the sport they kamstig represent) should be gotten rid of ASAP. The few benefit at the expense of the many, directly and disproportionately, and how many dreams and how much hard work is laid waste?

  • martin.gee.godfrey - 2012-02-25 19:31

    "But their Olympic committee decided the continental event was not competitive enough and they needed to take part in the Olympic qualifier to make it to the London Games" Typical of the SA Olympic committee trying to scupper the team even though they had already qualified. Seems now they will have to send the team after all! Well done girls... great tournament and great game...

      luvuko - 2012-02-25 20:17

      'Seems now they will have to send the team after all! Well done girls..' Don't put yo house on it

      Paul Mark Maarman - 2012-02-25 20:55

      Well...nothing unusual about our Olympic Committee...trying to save money for exec spouses to tag along...Well done girls...Next stop London.

  • colin.dovey - 2012-02-25 20:47

    GREAT! Now go for the Olympic Gold that you really deserve, and make SA proud!

  • David - 2012-02-26 09:39

    Woooohooo, awesome, congrats ladies. We are very proud of you.

  • Vic - 2012-02-26 13:47

    Great stuff, to our girls/ladies---really fantastic.!! The men also have to "re-qualify", after already having done so. As mentioned by others, they were NOT allowed to go to Olympics previously, at the whim of that idiot Ramsammy, who had also deemed the the team was "too white", when he obviously has eyesight probs, as the team was 50/50 I think, or thereabouts anyway.??!! You're quite correct, they fritter away & steal money that is supposed to be for the sportsmen/women & use/waste on themselves & their families.!! Administrators are generally all the pits.!!!!

  • Leko - 2012-02-27 11:16

    Phambili maqobokaza phambili...if I had money, I was going to fly to London and support you...

      wmatinyana - 2012-02-27 14:48

      PLAY LOTTO LEKO ONE DAY IS ONE DAY

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