The strength and character of the Wanderers u13g was evident this season with a superb showing throughout the Friday Night league with both sides performing well and only losing one game between them out of a total of 16 matches. This culminated in the Champ of Champs held on 9 September 2017 at the Randburg Astro.
The girls were drawn in the same pool as Crusaders, Shumba’s and Beaulieu considered the pool of death on the day. The first game was a tough contest against Beaulieu with Wanderers emerging 1-0 winners. The second game against Shumba’s, we had the better part of possession and opportunities but were unlucky to go down 0-1. This then shaped up for a clash between Crusaders and Wanderers to determine who would progress to the semi-finals. The courage and determination of the girls was clear with them fighting hard and winning 1-0 against a Crusaders side that had a number of Southern Gauteng players in it.
This result gave us a semi-final place against JSA, which went all the way to a shootout. The hero of the game was our goalkeeper, Zena Mbatsha, keeping JSA out and Wanderers in the tournament with some great goalkeeping and a cool head. The Wanderers u13g team of 2017 had made to the final of the Champ of Champs and were facing Shumba’s again.
The final exceeded expectation with the quality of hockey being exceptional from both sides. Shumba’s took the lead and followed up with an excellent second, the girls dug deep and pulled back a goal after being awarded a penalty corner. With 5 minutes to play Wanderers were pilling on the pressure in search of an equalizer, with only millimetres being the difference. Unfortunately, the game ended 1-2 to Shumba’s, with Wanderers taking second place. Well done to the girls for flying the Wanderers flag high and we look forward to this group of girls achieving even greater heights at the Wanderers.
A big thank you to
- Lisa Grobbelaar for the huge amount of behind the scenes administration throughout the year
- Wendy Cooke for assisting with Astro time to prepare for Champ of Champs
- Vanessa da Rocha and Scott Forssmann for assisting with selection and preparation of the side
- Greg Dillion and Lorcan Nurse for management and coaching of the side