It’s the beautiful poise and well-oiled Maroon Platoon of Maties versus the explosive pace and skill of NWU. Who will emerge the victors as we crown a new Varsity Hockey champion on Monday?
Until Maties faced NWU they were in cruise control this season. It was one-way traffic as the Cape side broke the speed limit flying through their fixtures. Whizzing past their opponents as if ignoring traffic signs it was a smooth ride. That was until they hit a speed bump in the form of NWU.
Neutrals couldn’t have asked for a more fascinating final. The juggernauts of Stellenbosch up against the one team to have beaten them in regular time.
ICYMI: Here’s how Maties reached the final
In an almost mirrored season, NWU were slow out of the blocks but since toppling Maties they have kept two clean sheets in three matches, conceding just four and scoring 13.
NWU will probably count on Carli Pretorius, who has scored six goals while Maties could turn to Lee-Ann Louwrens, who has scored four, but they have counted for eight as they have all been field goals.
Interestingly, seven Maties players will have the opportunity to atone for losing in the 2017 final; namely Kirsten Block, Stephanie Botha, Lenta Cullinan, Lida Kotze, this year’s captain Paige Phillips, Aimee-Leigh Pote and Sandisiwe Tabata
ICYMI: Here’s how NWU reached the final in dramatic fashion
Should the final be settled by a showdown, Maties lost in their only showdown experience, against Wits. NWU on the other hand, haven’t experienced one. You decide who has the advantage there.
On paper it’s all Maties. They’ve scored eight more than NWU this season and conceded four less. History doesn’t favour the ladies from Potch either – in their six encounters in Varsity Hockey history, Maties have won four; NWU just two. They met in the 2013 final where Maties triumphed 1-0 over NWU. Maties have also never lost to NWU at home.
But we all know that Varsity Hockey isn’t played on paper and that history is constantly being rewritten.
Catch the action live on SuperSport 10 at 19:45 on Monday, 20 May.
Maties: 2. Jamie Southgate, 3. Kirsten Block, 4. Stephanie Botha, 5. Lee-Ann Louwrens, 6. Tammy Minnaar, 7. Lida Kotze, 8. Paige Phillips (capt), 9. Aimee-Leigh Pote, 10. Lenta Cullinan, 11. Monique Bartsch, 12. Zola Nompuku, 13. Simone van der Colff, 14. Rebecca Kaps, 17. Awande Mkhwanazi, 18. Ammaarah Hendricks, 20. Francisca Darkoh, 23. Angela Welman, 24. Lara Stevens.
NWU: 1. Caitlin Grant, 2. Mishka Ellis, 5. Jessica de Bruyn-Smith, 6. Kirsty Adams, 7. Miecke Flemming, 10. Meeghan Klomp, 11. Kelsey Minnaar, 12. Charné Maddocks (capt), 13. Carli Pretorius, 14. Clarise Smit, 15. Courtney du Preez, 16. Candice Silent, 18. Sherine Ledwaba, 19. Sare Laubscher, 20. Anneke Beukman, 22. Jacolene McLaren, 23. Kutlwano Moshugi, 24. Christa Ramasimang.
MATIES VS NWU VARSITY HOCKEY HEAD TO HEAD
DATE STAGE RESULT
10/5/19 RR NWU 2 Maties 1
15/5/17 SF NWU 2 Maties 3
8/5/17 RR Maties 0 NWU 0 Maties won penalty shootout 3-2
4/5/15 RR NWU 0 Maties 1
20/5/13 Final NWU 0 Maties 1
20/4/13 RR NWU 2 Maties 0
Key: RR – round robin; SF – semifinal
TEAM P W D L PF PA PD
NWU 6 2 0 4 6 6 0
Maties 6 4 0 2 6 6 0