South Africa men and women hockey teams took both Rio 2016 Olympics qualifying spots as the African Hockey Championship ended in Randburg, Johannesburg, South Africa.
South Africa men won the 2015 men’s competition after defeating Egypt 4-2 in the final, while their women defeated Ghana 3-0 in the final game of the round-robin to finish top of the standings, both grabbing slots in Rio 2016.
Both South Africa women and men’s teams finished the competition with six wins from as many matches.
In the men’s bronze medal match, fans were treated to a fabulous display of attack and counter-attack as rivals Kenya (FIH World Ranking: 39) and Ghana (World Ranking: 41) battled it out for a 4-3 win in favour of the higher-ranked Kenyan team.
Derric Kuloba opened the scoring in the 10th minute when some great build-up play created space for the midfielder to slip the ball past Eugene Acheampong in the Ghana goal. This was Acheampong’s last action of the Championship as he left the field to be replaced by Jeffery Karikari.
Ghana came straight back into the game, with Captain Salya Nsalbini leading by example. His equaliser from a penalty corner in the 17th minute brought Ghana back level.
On the verge of half-time, Kenya got their second goal, a penalty corner struck by Maxwell Wakhungu; the action also saw two Ghana players yellow carded. Despite being down to eight field players, Ghana held on until half-time with no further score.
Four minutes into the second half however, and still with a two-man advanatge, Kenya extended their lead to 3-1 with a well-taken goal from Leon Magomere.
As the action flew from end-to-end, Ghana were still very much in the game and they came back to 3-2 when Michael Baiden scored from open play.
However, Kenya restored the cushion just one minute later through some great work by George Mutria and, despite one more goal from Benedict Sam in the 50th minute, Kenya were able to shut up shop and hold onto the lead through the last 10 tense minutes.
Kenya women (World Ranking: 37) will be hugely disappointed that they were unable to end the event with a win. The Kenyan team played exciting hockey throughout the competition, but against the speed and strength of the ever-improving Nigerian team (World Ranking: 53) they had no answers with the West Africans winning 3-1.
It was Kenya who actually took the lead in the third minute of play. A foul in the circle led to a penalty stroke, which Teresa Nekesa calmly slotted home, but that early set-back was the wake-up call needed by coach Abdullahe Ndanababa’s team and Nigeria rose to the challenge with gusto.
It was Eleho Ovoh who did the damage, the 22-year-old scored a hat trick, with three goals scored from open play. Her vision and reading of the game mark her out as a player to watch in the future.
The South African teams will be invited to participate at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in accordance with the FIH Rio 2016 Qualification System for the Olympic hockey events, approved by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). (FIH)
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In The Spotlight
Vincent Oburu scored five goals as AFC Leopards recorded their highest ever competitive win, beating Diero FC 15-1 in the GoTV Shield round of 32 fixture played in Kisumu on Saturday.
Whyonne Isuza bagged four with Musa Mudda and Marcellus Ingotsi bagging braces. Ian Otieno was also on the score sheet, netting the 15th from the spot.
In other matches, Kakamega Homeboyz beat Naivas FC 1-0 at the Camp Toyoyo grounds. Nairobi Stima beat 4-1 while Palos FC thumped 5-1. Former SPL side KCB beat Poror Mote 3-0 at Afraha Stadium.
Collated GoTV roundup Saturday 24th June 2017
Poror Mote 1 vs 3 KCB
Timsales 0 vs 3 Sony Sugar
Al-Ahly 0 vs 2 Kenpoly FC
Tandaza 2(6) vs 2 (7) Zetech University
Naivas 0 VS 1 Homeboyz
Machakos United 1 vs 4 Nairobi Stima
Uweza 1 vs 3 Bandari
Bungoma SuperStars 2 vs 3 Kariobangi Sharks
Karatina Homeboyz 2 vs 0 AP
Griffin 1 vs 5 Palos
Dero 1 vs 15 AFC Leopards
Cristiano Ronaldo scored a penalty as Portugal beat New Zealand 4-0 to seal their semi-final place at the Confederations Cup.
Ronaldo's 33rd-minute goal was followed by strikes from Manchester City-bound Bernardo Silva, Andre Silva and Nani.
Mexico also progressed to the semi-finals as they knocked hosts Russia out of the tournament with a 2-1 victory.
Portugal ensured top spot in Group A as New Zealand finished bottom after a third straight defeat.
However, defender Pepe will miss Portugal's semi-final after picking up his second yellow card of the tournament.
And there will be fitness concerns over Bernardo Silva, who was substituted at half-time because of an ankle injury.
In the other group, Chile and Germany will both progress to the last four if they avoid defeat on Sunday.
Chile face Australia and Germany play Cameroon on Sunday to determine the final standings in Group B.
Confederations Cup semi-final fixtures
Portugal v Group B second place (Wed 28 June 21:00 EAT)
Group B winner v Mexico (Thurs 29 June 21:00 EAT)
Full fixtures and results
Portugal, Euro 2016 winners
Mexico, 2015 Concacaf Cup winners
New Zealand, 2016 OFC Nations Cup winners
Russia, qualify as 2018 World Cup hosts
Cameroon, 2017 Africa Cup of Nations winners
Chile, 2015 Copa America winners
Australia, 2015 Asian Cup winners
Germany, 2014 World Cup winners
Thika United is the latest side to withdraw from the GoTV Shield which kicks off this weekend across the country.
Kasarani Sub branch's Nairobi Governor Cup Champions Terror Squad and Makadara Champions Makongeni Youth have made it to the semifinals of the Nairobi Governors Cup County Championships Nairobi East Zone. Also through are Kamkunjis best Jijazie FC and Babadogo's Korogocho Youth
Terror Squad played out a 1-1 draw with Korogocho Youth at the Kariobangi North Primary School, a result that was enough for both teams to qualify. Army man Enock Mogire was on target for Terror Squad while Korogocho’s goal was netted by America Jawa
At the City Stadium, Makongeni Youth confirmed their place in the last four with a 2-1 win over a dominant Reuben United. Goals from Kennedy Otieno and Godrick Juma did the job for Makongeni, with Adams Usama’s equalizer at the stroke of halftime for Reuben United ending up as a mere consolation
Jijazie had earlier on thumped Kinsan FC 3-0. Morvo Papalai, James Okello and Vincent Nasa were on target for Jijazie
Kamkunji's Golden Angels were winners in the girls’ category, brushing aside Soweto Queens 5-0. Grace Achieng, Sheila Rono, Catherine Achieng, Evelyn Juma and Jess Wangari were on the score sheet for the victorious. The match between Mukuru Talents and Nairobi County Queens FC ended in a 0-0 stalemate
At Kariobangi North Primary School, Kariobangi Sports Ladies managed a 2-0 win over Star-started Kayole Starlets JNR. Diana Wacera and Mercy Achieng were on target for the victors, who consequently qualify for the quarterfinals. Girls Unlimited edged out Street revolution 2-0 in the other match played at the same venue
Terror Squad a.k.a The Red Eagles will face Makongeni Youth in the first semifinal of the Nairobi East Zone, while Jijazie FC will be up against Korogocho Youth in the other semifinal
The winner from the Nairobi East Zone will face her Nairobi West branch counterparts in the grand finale, whose winner will pocket kshs 1.5 Million, with the losing finalist taking home kshs 1 Million.
The losing finalists from both zones will square it out in a third-place play-off which has a kshs 500,000 token at stake
The top scorer, best goalkeeper and Most Valuable Player will each take home kshs 250,000 each.
Nairobi East Zone Results
Jijazie FC 3-0 Kinsan FC
Makongeni Youth FC 2-1 Reuben United FC
Kariobangi Sports FC 2-0 Githurai United
Terror Squad FC 1-1 Korogocho Youth
Kariobangi Sports Ladies 2-0 Kayole Starlets
Girls Unlimited 2-0 Street revolution
Golden Angels 5-0 Soweto Queens
Mukuru Talents 0-0 Nairobi County