On Semi-final Day at the 2023 SA Hockey IPT four semi-finals took place across the two sections with an opportunity to book a place in the championship match on Saturday.
Men’s A Section
SF1 – Western Province 2-1 KZN Raiders
The two teams that have shared the last four titles battled for a place in the final of the 2023 edition of the South African Hockey’s showpiece event. The defending champions Western Province landed the first blow when Keenan Horne prodded home. That lead was doubled just five minutes later. A quick take from Luthando Jonas found Idrees Abdulla in space and he rifled a reverse stick strike into the roof of the goal. The Raiders continued to work gainfully for an opportunity but were left frustrated on many occasions. They were awarded a penalty corner at the end of the game which Matt Guise-Brown converted, but it was too little too late and the threat of the threepeat remains for Western Province.
SF2 – South Africa U21 2-1 Southern Gauteng
The South African U21 side doesn’t often make the IPT final and Guy Elliotts side would undoubtedly have been relishing the opportunity to make their own moment of history. Mustapha Cassiem has been leading the battle for his team and gave them the best opportunity to edge into a final when he opened the scoring with a drag flick into the roof of the goal. He would help the team to believe even further when he added a second at a time when Southerns were starting to dominate possession. This one even better than the first into the roof of the net. Southern Gauteng would score a late goal to set up a grandstand finish, but Ramphele’s strike alone was not enough and it was glory for the U21.
Earlier on the day the 5-8th Playoff’s WP Peninsula secured their safety with a smashing 8-0 win against Free State, while Eastern Province overcame the Northern Blues in a thrilling 4-3 games.
Men’s B Section
SF1 – SG Witsies 2-1 North West
The free scoring SG Witsies met a resolute defensive outfit in North West. Witsies would love to reclaim their A Section status and that journey got off to a reasonably good start when Michael van den Berg netted the early goal. Blaine Grey though threw the game on its head with a goal for North West finishing off a sublime tiki-taka type of penalty corner. Witsies had a hotly contested stroke to re-establish the lead, but JP Britz was unable to score, and the game was deadlocked into the final quarter calling out for a hero. That opportunity was presented to JP Britz who was afforded the chance for atonement and delivered superbly. His goal enough to seal a final spot for the Johannesburgers.
SF2 – KZN Mynahs (4) 3-3 (2) SACD
An incredible battle saw the Mynahs lead three times and three times the SACD peg them back. Dylan Ferreira opened the scoring with a fine penalty corner before SACD levelled through Bavumile Mkhonza with a superb diving deflection. Ethan Biggar re-established the lead in the second half with a breathtaking counter attacking goal and once again saw scores levelled as Courtney Halle reminded of his prowess. The Mynahs had a third lead of the game through Ryan Bradfield knocking away the stroke but once again Halle levelled from a penalty corner. It would require a shootout to decide the winner and it was the hosts who squeaked their way through.
SA Hockey IPT 2023 | Results – 25 August 2023
SA Hockey IPT 2023 | Fixtures – 26 August 2023
by South Africa