12 January 2018

Namibia: Women Beat Unam Men in Hockey Warm-Up

NAMIBIA's women's hockey team produced a great comeback to beat Unam's men's team 4-3 in a friendly match on Wednesday evening.

The match formed part of their preparations for next month's Indoor World Cup and the women produced a fine performance against a strong and physical Unam team.

Kiana Cormack scored a brace and Gillian Hermanus and Marcia Venter one goal each, while Issaskar Tjikuniva, Penda Nambala and Heini Swartbooi replied for Unam.

Namibia's women displayed a fine tactical game, but struggled with their short corners, where they missed numerous shots at goal with a few also hitting the post.

Namibia women dominated the early exchanges with their tactical and patient build-ups and took the lead midway through the first half when Gillian Hermanus finished off Kiana Cormack's counterattack.

Unam, however, struck back with two goals in quick succession by Tjikuniva and Nambala to take a 2-1 lead at the half time break.

Windhoek Old Boys and national striker Siabonga Martins made a guest appearance for Unam in the second half and made his presence felt with some strong runs.

Unam went 3-1 ahead when Heini Swartbooi scored from Tjikuniva's cross, but the women came close with Dure Boshoff hitting the post while two short corners were saved.

Namibia's women seemed to be heading for defeat, but they struck back in style in the final five minutes.

Marcia Venter pulled a goal back with a fine back stick shot, and then drew level when Cormack scored from a counterattack.

In the final seconds they won a short corner and with the full time whistle already having gone, Cormack scored from an inside pass by Venter to clinch a fine victory.

Namibia's women's coach Erwin Handura said their short corners did not work very well.

"We started a bit slow and at the end of the first half we conceded two goals. We only managed to score one goal, but we hit the post four times and our short corners did not work very well. Their goalie also made some great saves, but we created some good chances in the second half and then managed to win it at the end," he said.

"These Unam guys are fast and they have good skills, but we will play them again and I think it will be a different score then," he added.

Unam had quite a strong and physical approach and Handura said it would help prepare them for the World Cup.

"I think its always good to play against a men's team because they are physical, they are fast and they have skills and that is what we will be up against at the World Cup. Cup. Teams like Germany and Ukraine play a very fast game, especially Germany who are very fast on the counterattack," he said.

The women's side will continue to train at the DTS Sport Club over the next week while some more practise matches have been lined up against Unam, DTS and a combined men's side.


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