The SPAR South Africa women’s Indoor hockey side that will be heading to the 2022 FIH Indoor Hockey World Cup in Belgium has been named. The South African side received an invite to the tournament after the withdrawals due to COVID travel restrictions by both Australia and New Zealand.
For the SA Women it’s a new era after the retirement of legendary skipper Cindy Hack, along with the unavailability of Celia Seerane and Kelly Reed. It offers opportunity for a number of players, while Jessica O’Connor, who will become the most-capped player at the World Cup, is a natural successor as captain.
“We are SO excited to get to Belgium and take on the best in the world.” – SA Captain Jessica O’Connor said, anticipating the challenge
“The combination of experience and young new talent has created an exciting balanced dynamic,” said O’Connor.
The squad boasts a number of highly-experienced players, with Jamie Southgate having received her 50th cap at the Indoor Africa Cup of Nations, and Edith Molikoe, Jess Lardant, Eloise Walters and Robyn Johnson all have more than 30 test caps for their country.
South Africa will be competing for the fourth time at the FIH Indoor World Cup and would love nothing more than to improve on their 9th place finish at the 2015 World Cup.
Under coach Lennie Botha the team have played a remarkable 108 test matches, winning 78 of them.
Of course, the South Africans have a remarkable run of form since the 2018 Indoor Hockey World Cup. They have played 53 test matches, winning 41 drawing 6 and losing just 6. Including victories against Switzerland, Czech Republic, Poland, Ireland, Namibia and Zimbabwe.
South Africa will be in Pool B alongside Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Namibia and Netherlands, with the top 4 teams advancing to the Quarter Final Stage.
Pool B features Germany, Ukraine, Czech Republic, Kazakhstan, the USA and Canada.
“As always, we want to thank Spar for constantly backing us. We hope to make South Africa proud,” said O’Conner.
The SA Women’s Indoor Team for the FIH Indoor Hockey World Cup 2022 (Player, Province, Caps):
Charlize Swanepoel (Mpumalanga) 4
Nepo Serage (Western Province) 0
Jessica Lardant (SPAR KZN Raiders) 30
Eloise Walters (KZN Inland) 49
Daniela de Oliveira (SPAR KZN Raiders) 5
Edith Molikoe (Northern Blues) 35
Jamie Southgate(Western Province) 53
Jess O’Connor (SPAR KZN Raiders) 108
Tamlyn Kock (Southern Gauteng) 0
Robyn Johnson (Southern Gauteng) 44
Tegan Fourie (SPAR KZN Raiders) 34
Kayla de Waal (Western Province) 17
Dunell van Taak (Northern Blues) 0
Kirsty Adams (North West) 0
Photo Caption: Incoming SA Indoor Women’s Hockey team captain Jess O’Connor, pictured at the Africa Cup. O’Connor is highly regarded to take charge of a settled team featuring a few exciting debutants in a golden opportunity for South Africa to participate in the FIH Indoor Hockey World Cup 2022 in Belgium. Photo: Jess O’Connor (Instagram)
Copy by Hockey SA with editing by gsport