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17.07.2009 Hockey

It looks like all South Africa affair …As 9th AfHF hockey championship ends tomorrow

By Kofi Owusu Aduonum - Ghanaian Chronicle
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The signs are clear on the wall that Africa hockey heavyweights, South Africa, are on the threshold of retaining their titles as the African Hockey competition ends tomorrow.

The men's category will see South Africa take on their Egyptian counterparts in the second game of the day.

The North Africans have proven tough customers for the Southerners in past encounters, but the situation looks different this time round, making free scoring South Africa the potential winners of the competition.

South Africa are yet to concede a goal in the competition, having scored 18 goals in three games, as against Egypt's three goals in three games, winning 2-1, losing 0-2 and drawing 1-1 against Nigeria, South Africa and Ghana respectively.

Indeed, the Greg Clark-led side, blessed with quality players have all it takes to defend the title and make it to the World Cup in India.

Ghana's Black Sticks (ladies) will pit their strength against their South African counterparts in the ladies final in a game likely to favour the latter.

And like the men's category, the winner qualifies for the World Cup slated for Argentina next year. But Ghana's captain, Pamela Condobrey said after their emphatic 4-1 win over Nigeria that: “It's difficult for me to stick my neck out for now, I think the pitch will decide.”

In the third place (male) matches, Ghana and Nigeria will battle for bronze this afternoon. Ghana's quest to avenge the 1-2 defeat to Nigeria in the group stages makes it a very dicey encounter.

Nigeria, however, appears favourites, as they take on Egypt for the ladies third-place game at 1.30pm this afternoon.

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