TuksHockey 1st teams winners of Northerns Blues League
By Linda Dlamini
Posted on 19 June 2012
TuksHockey Men and Ladies faced their toughest matches in the Northerns Blues League this past weekend and both teams came out tops.
On Friday night, the men’s team faced a strong Old Albanians side which is made up largely of former Tuks players. The match was played at a high tempo with both teams getting stuck in. The young Tuks team proved too strong for their opposition winning the match 3-0 and setting them up to win the league with one match to go on Sunday against Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) Men 1st Team.
The ladies faced up against old rivals, TUT 1, who have in their line up former National Ladies Captain, Lindsey Wright (nee Carlisle), and goalkeeper Inke van Wyk as well as current national defender, Kim Hubach. So it would be a case of youth versus experience as the somewhat young Tuks ladies side also boasts some talented and up and coming ladies players, SA emerging squad players Lilian du Plessis and Phumelela Mbande as well as SA U21 Tournament top goal scorer, Jacintha Jubb. The Tuks ladies did not capitalise on opportunities presented and in a match which saw little excitement, the Tuks girls put themselves in tough position with regards to winning the league, as they drew 1 all with the experienced TUT Ladies.
Sunday morning saw both ladies and men’s teams with tough fixtures that if won, would see them both crowned 2012 Northerns Blues Hockey Association League Winners. The men faced TUT in an early 09:30 start in the North of Pretoria at the Tshwane University of Technology campus. The ladies faced up against Pukke in a 10:30 start at the TuksHockey Astro.
The men were dominant in the match and even though Coach David Viney’s men won the match 7-1, this was not the team’s best performance, especially with the team preparing for USSA. It still was impressive to see the side earn of convincing result even where they committed a lot of turnovers.
The ladies had been unable to beat Pukke this season in the preliminary matches and with Pukke boosting their line-up with national ladies midfielder, Celia Evans, and on-form goal scorer for the national ladies team, Sulette Damons, the Tuks ladies had a tough encounter ahead. At half-time the teams were level at 1-1, however a gutsy performance by the Tuks ladies saw them not only win the well contested match but also clinch the league title alongside their male counterparts.
Both teams will be finalising their preparation for USSA and will be hoping to finish at the top of the tournament.