The Mecer NMMU Madibaz scored a convincing 6-2 win over the Gelvan Hurricanes in a much-anticipated EP men’s premier league hockey fixture at the NMMU Astro on Sunday.
The fixture was billed as one to watch, and it did not disappoint in this regard.
From the outset, the match was charged with emotion and the game tempo in the first quarter was electrifying.
Play alternated from circle to circle, but it was Madibaz who broke the deadlock first with a goal from Ignatius Malgraff.
Three minutes later, the Hurricanes equalised through a field goal of their own, scored by Winchester Scott.
Madibaz thought they had gone ahead minutes before the end of the quarter, but the goal was disallowed and the teams headed into the mini-break at 1-1.
In the second quarter, the teams continued where they had left off, playing a fast-paced attacking match. However, neither team was able to take the ascendancy in either possession or territory.
The Hurricanes were awarded a penalty corner which they failed to convert, while at the other end, Dillan Langveldt shot just wide of the Hurricanes’ goal.
A second penalty corner by the Hurricanes saw them find the back of the net, only for the goal to be disallowed, and a third penalty-corner shot at goal by the Hurricanes rebounded to safety off the post.
The Madibaz had no further opportunities in the quarter, and this stalemate took the teams into the half-time break still level at 1-1.
In the third quarter, Madibaz came out strongly, employing a full press from the start, and were rewarded with a goal by Malgraff, who completed his brace only five minutes in.
The next 10 minutes saw Madibaz taking control of the match, and they scored two more unanswered goals, one by Arno van Jaarsveld from a penalty corner and the other a field goal by Curtis Samboer.
The Madibaz took a 4-1 advantage into the final quarter.
One minute into the fourth quarter, the Hurricanes replied with a goal by Geowynne Gamiet, but the day belonged to Malgraff, who rounded out his hat-trick with a goal in the 49th minute.
An arm-wrestle ensued, and it looked as though the match would end with the prevailing score-line, but Madibaz’s Rasmah Andoh added a goal from a penalty corner just before the close to seal the win.
Fans of hockey are invited to support the matches that take place every weekend. For more information on all hockey matters, the EP Hockey Federation office can be contacted on 061-726-4779.