SA men secure thrilling gold at Kathea Energy Nkosi Cup

South Africa’s men’s team celebrates after winning the Nkosi Cup. Photo: SA Hockey

South Africa, powered by Tops at SPAR, locked horns with Namibia in a tournament final for the second time in a month having previously played in the Sultan Nazrin Shah Cup in Malaysia. On that occasion the Namibians come out on top with a shootout win and the South Africans were determined to make their statement in Cape Town.

It was a thrilling opening ten minutes with DJ Strauss making a couple of important saves to deny the South Africans in the early exchanges and the opening quarter passed with minimal fuss for either side.

South Africa turned up the heat and in return the volume as the Wynberg Military base started rocking in the second quarter. Idrees Abdulla scored his first goal after good work from Mustapha Cassiem. Abdulla then assisted for a fired home Dayaan Cassiem after a brilliant one-two and two minutes later Mustapha Cassiem made it 3-0 with a superb show of individual skills and tenacity. It remained the score at the half-time break.

Steven Paulo was called on to convert a penalty stroke after Mustapha Cassiem was fouled by DJ Britz and duly put it away for 4-0 before a sweeping counter attack saw Ryan Julius make it 5-0 with a fully extended stretch on the finish. Liam Hermanus pulled one goal back from a penalty corner variation before Abdulla tapped in after good work from Mustapha.

Mustapha would add his second from just inside the circle before Dalpiarro Langford finished coolly into the back of the net. Liam Hermanus scored a penalty stroke after the ball had it Steven Paulo on the line to make the score 8-2.

South Africa were able to consistently add goals with Abdulla completing his hat-trick before Lungani Gabela would add gloss to a bloated score line of 10-2, sending the South Africans to the afterparty ready for more action, but more importantly giving them the title of first Nkosi Cup Champions. – runridedive.com

Kathea Energy MVP of the final – Dayaan Cassiem (South Africa)
Top Goal scorer – Mustapha Cassiem (South Africa)
Player of the Tournament – Mustapha Cassiem (South Africa)
Goalkeeper of the Tournament – Richter van Rooyen (Namibia)

Final Standings
1 – Namibia
2 – South Africa
3 – United States

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