Hockey WC Team Departs

This evening Marsha Marescia, South Africa’s National Women’s Hockey Captain will lead her team through the airport turnstiles on her first international assignment in charge, as they board the plane to the Samsung Women’s Hockey World Cup, starting in Spain later this month.

Speaking to gsport today, a nervous Marescia admitted to a case of butterflies: “Yes, this is my first tour as captain, and I’m feeling anxious … it’s going to be quite a challenge, but I’m looking forward to it!”.

"The team spirit is good, positive, I think we’re all looking forward to it”, said Marescia. “I’ve had a good response from the team, and I believe that they support me.”

On the team’s prospects in the World Cup, Marescia was wary of creating unrealistic expectations. “I think we should be better [… than the current 11th-place ranking of 64 competing countries],” Marescia told gsport.

“But the World Cup will determine whether we are [better than that] or not. I think we are, and we’re going to try to prove that.”

Discussing a realistic World Cup ambition, Marescia was confident, saying: “Yes, we would like to finish in the second four, somewhere from 5th to 8th placing would be realistic of where we are.

“And to do that, we must end third or fourth in our pool, and I believe we’re quite capable of that,” she said.

After an initial training camp in Barcelona, where the SA squad will play in warm-up matches against Australia, they will move to the World Cup venue in Madrid for the start of the competition on 27 September.

SA’s first match will be against Australia, followed by pool matches against Korea, Argentina, USA and Japan.

Marescia admits that the warm-up matches against Australia will be useful in devising match strategies.

“Also, I played against Argentina last year, we’re fairly up-to-date on their style, we know their keeper,” said Marescia.

gsport wishes the National Hockey team all the best!

Read about: gsport’s visit to the girls’ training camp at the Pretoria HPC

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Launched in 2006, gsport exists to enhance the commercial prospects of our women athletes, and other women in sport, by telling the inspiring story of SA women in sport. Thank you for your contribution!

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