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Dale edge Queen’s to claim early season bragging rights in Komani

By Avuyile Sawula , in Hockey | Featured Hockey | News , at 2024-04-21 Tags: , , , ,

Dale College captain, Sibongisile Nzima on the charge against Queen's College in Komani on 19 April 2024. Dale College won the match 3-2. Photo: Scoty Photography
Dale College captain, Sibongisile Nzima on the charge against Queen’s College in Komani on 19 April 2024. Dale College won the match 3-2. Photo: Scoty Photography

Dale College produced arguably their best performance of the season to score a treasured 3-2 win over Queen’s College at the Komani school’s 166th Reunion on Friday afternoon.

Last season, Queen’s won both meetings, but the bragging rights now belong to the boys from Qonce.

Heading into the highly anticipated clash, Dale was undeniably the underdog, especially after taking a 9-0 hammering from Grey High School at home last weekend.

Queen’s, on the other hand, were brimming with confidence after they held Selborne College to a 1-1 draw in their FNB Classic Clash encounter in East London. Before that match, Selborne had won 15 matches in succession since the start of the season.

As expected, the opening chukka of Friday’s match didn’t produce much in the way of clear-cut goalscoring opportunities.

Dale, however, grabbed the lead about four minutes into the second chukka. Pushing deep into the Queen’s half, Amangile Songelwa whipped in a cross, which was met by an unmarked Gavin Walton on the far post, and he converted to give his side a 1-0 lead at half-time.

Coach Junior Mqingwana’s team had the bit between their teeth, and they came out firing in the third chukka, causing the hosts several issues.

Queen’s had an opportunity to pull one back via a short corner, but the visitors defended it well.

At the opposite end of the field, a Dale counterattack culminated in their second goal of the game. Some smart play gained them a circle entry and Sonwabiso Dyani provided the finishr.

It appeared as if Dale was cruising to victory, but Queen’s, playing in their backyard, refused to go down without a fight.

In the final chukka, the hosts drew level, courtesy of goals from skipper Bevaneo Maytham and vice-captain Aiden van Jaarsveld, which set up a tense final five minutes of the match.

That tension was brought to an end when Dale’s co-captain, Sibongisile Nzima, slotted a late winner.

It wasn’t straightforward, however, as the umpires deliberated whether or not the ball had crossed the boundary line before Nzima netted. They gave his strike the thumbs-up and Dale sealed the victory.

“The win was important to reinstall the trust the boys have in our systems,” coach Mqingwana told SuperSport Schools after the match.

“The changeroom is buzzing and, most importantly, it’s one from one in the targeted games.

“Next week, we go again,” he concluded.

Dale will shift their focus to Cambridge High School next weekend, while Queen’s travels to Bloemfontein to face St Andrew’s School.

Another Eastern Cape side that was in action was Grey High School, who were in Cape Town to face Wynberg Boys’ High and SACS.

On Friday night, Andrew Beynon’s charges played out to a 2-2 draw against Wynberg. They were, however, blown away on Saturday morning, going down 2-5 against a well-structured and skilful SACS side.

Grey will need to put those results behind them and regroup as they prepare for another big challenge when they host Paul Roos in Gqeberha next weekend.

Scorers

Dale College (3): Gavin Walton, Sonwabiso Dyani, Sibongisile Nzima. Queen’s College (2): Bevaneo Maytham, Aiden van Jaarsveld.

error: Sorry ol' chap, those shenanigans are not permissible.