AFTER finishing in sixth spot in the women’s hockey interprovincial last year, Eastern Province have set their sights slightly higher for this year’s tournament, starting in Johannesburg on Sunday.
Coach Anton Peltenberg said they were targeting at least a spot in the top four, which means ending in the top two in their pool to qualify for Friday’s semifinal playoffs.
"Our build-up has gone well and we have been preparing for this since February, so we are aiming for a top- four finish,” he said yesterday.
The experienced Liesel Dorothy will play a pivotal role for EP, while Peltenberg said they had a number of young players in the squad who should be able to learn from the experience.
Peltenberg felt the playing fields would be more level this year as he believed the national players who took part in the Olympics would not be competing for their provincial sides.
This should certainly help EP’s ambitions, although they are in a testing pool and will have tough matches against Southerns, Northerns and KZN Inland.
EP start their programme against KZN Inland on Sunday and will be looking for a good start to the week.
Peltenberg said they would not be focusing on anything else at this stage.
"We will be taking it one step at a time and see where that takes us,” he said.
The top two in each pool will play in the semifinals, with the final playoffs set for Saturday.
The pools are:
Pool A: WP, KZN Raiders, North West, Amathole, Wits, SA Under-21.
Pool B: Southerns, Northerns, Eastern Province, Free State, KZN Mynahs, KZN Inland.
- EP’s fixtures are, Sunday: v KZN Inland; Monday: v KZN Mynahs; Tuesday: v Northerns; Wednesday: v Southerns; Thursday: v Free State.
BECAUSE of the women’s interprovincial and the intervarsity in Grahamstown, there are only a handful of league fixtures this weekend.
A key clash looms for Gelvan Hurricanes in the men’s premier league today when they take on Lakeside Cavaliers at the KC March astro.
After last weekend’s game against NMMU Madibaz was postponed because of the weather, the Hurricanes will be looking for full points to consolidate their position at the top. But, as always, they can expect no favours from their arch-rivals Lakeside.