SACS looking to bounce back after the Hibbert Shield Hockey Festival disappointment.
After finishing second in the Hibbert Shield Hockey Festival, South African College Schools (SACS) will be looking to return to winning ways when they travel to Bishops Diocesan College for an electrifying Cape Derby on Friday night on the Woodlands Astroturf at Bishop’s.
SACS, who lost to Paul Roos (3-2) in the dying seconds of the final in Gqeberha, failed to defend the title they won in the 2022 edition.
However, the Cape side has undeniably been the side to beat this year. They currently sit second in the latest school’s hockey rankings, trailing behind St. Stithians College, who have played seven fewer games than them.
To break down their season, the team began the year with an international tour to the Netherlands in April. Down under, they won four of their six matches against HC Athena (10-0), S-Hertogenbosch (3-1), LOCH (6-4), and Hattem (5-4), respectively.
A return to home soil brought even more fortunes for James Peverley’s side, as convincing wins over Parel Vallei (4-0), Grey High School (11-0), and Paarl Boys (9-0) asserted their dominance in the South African schools’ hockey scene.
The recent disappointment came at the Hibbert Shield Hockey Festival hosted in Gqeberha. After scoring 18 goals and conceding just three in the group stages, the side from Newlands lost concentration in the final and failed to defend their title, finishing second behind Paul Roos (3-2).
That will, however, not dampen the team’s spirit, as they can fix their wrongs against a side they know best, in Bishops.
When Bishops are concerned, a win against their rivals after losing (1-0) in the final match last year would be the icing on the cake.
However, it has been hard to judge Bishop’s season considering the quality of the opposition teams they’ve played this year. Their tour to the Netherlands saw the side win eight of their 11 games in the Dutch Republic.
However, in their recent clash, Sean Henchie’s men succumbed to a 3-1 defeat, leaving much to be desired about the side.
Another factor that might play a role in the game is the number of days the Bishops team has gone without playing any competitive hockey. The last time they played was on the 21st of April, and a little bit of rust might be visible in the first two quarters.
Kick-off is at 18:30 on the Woodlands Hockey Austro.
SACS team to face Bishops: Rogan Stirk, Luke Salters, Thomas Stewart, Michael Cowen (c), Litha Kraai, Mikey Royden- Turner, Josh Opperman, Ozair Pillai, Dean Carrick, Liam Haupt, Ray Bonnet, Cole Allam, Stephan Meyer, Rowan Davis, Wayne Mandabva.