Old Boys off to winning start

Jack Fourie of Windhoek Old Boys in action against Delron Handura of School of Excellence. Photo: Helge Schütz

The defending men’s Indoor Hockey Premier League champions Windhoek Old Boys got their campaign off to a winning start over the weekend, but they had to pull out all the stops before beating School of Excellence 2-1.

In a closely contested encounter both teams had several chances, but Old Boys prevailed through goals by Dylan Finch and Ernest Jacobs, while SOE replied through Kaizemi Kandji. 

The match got off to a hectic start with attacks and counter-attacks at both ends, before Finch broke the deadlock, steering in a cross from the right wing at the end of the first quarter. 

SOE came back with a bang as Kandjii equalised at the start of the second quarter, after a fine attack by Delron Handura, but Old Boys immediately regained the lead when Ernest Jacobs slammed home Dian La Cock’s cross.

Old Boys could have gone further ahead when they won a penalty in the third quarter, but Petrus Theron’s shot was well saved by SOE’s keeper Roben Kambinda, while at the other end, Jacobs did well to clear a shot by Delron Handura off the line. 

In the final quarter both sides had more opportunities from short corners, but they could not capitalise as Old Boys held on for a narrow win. 

The win saw Old Boys joining SOE and Saints II on three points on the log, still well behind Saints I who lead the log on eight points from two matches.  

It was a promising start by Old Boys, who have been strengthened with the signing of several new players, including national captain and goalkeeper DJ Strauss, national striker Percy Barthram and former Saints defender Petrus Theron. 

Strauss said he was pleased to get off to a winning start.

“It was our first game of the season, and it was very tough. Everyone stepped up their hockey, and SOE had a brilliant game – they had a lot more opportunities than we did and kept me quite busy at the back, but it was my first game for my new club and I’m very happy with the win,” he said. 

“I was at DTS for 20 years and in the end it was just a move for myself and my hockey – it’s a higher level of training, there are more seniors at Old Boys and it’s just a change of scenery. We are a small country and even smaller hockey community so its just a change of scenery to keep the competition higher on all sides,” he added. 

Strauss, who was one of Namibia’s star players at the Indoor World Cup in Pretoria in February, said he was not thinking of retirement yet. 

“I’ll still be around for quite some time, you guys are not getting rid of me yet. Like I always say, you don’t get old when you get old, you get old when you stop and I’m not stopping.”

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