The South Africa women’s hockey team lost 3-1 to Germany after trailing 1-0 at half-time in the teams second Group-B match at the 2014 Hockey World Cup in The Hague, Holland on Tuesday morning.
South Africa started well, making a number of quality penetrations into Germany’s defensive zone and in the 10th minute Shelley Russell shaded the wrong side of the left post with keeper Kim Platten to beat.
The Germans, who drew Korea 1-1 in their opener, came back and Kristina Hillmann tested keeper Anelle van Deventer before they had a goal disallowed after the ball came off an attackers body.
South Africa, like Germany, also needed points in Group B after their 4-1 defeat to defending champions Argentina on Sunday.
Midway through the half Dirkie Chamberlain brought Platten into action again after Bernie Coston’s powerful cross from the right.
However, the Germans opened the scoring in the 19th when Jana Teschke fired in a left-to-right diagonal ball from inside the 23-metre area and Marie Mavers was superb in getting a touch to leave Van Deventer with no chance (1-0).
There was encouragement when South Africa won a penalty corner in the 28th minute but the goalscoring opportunity went astray.
A number of other promising build-ups went awry but South Africa kept plugging away and won a second penalty corners, and then a third, on half-time, yet the Germans held on to their one-goal lead.
After the changeover, the battle was fought largely between the 23-metre lines in the first 10 minutes.
Germany were down to nine players in the 11th minute and a Russell turnover and feed right to Pietie Coetzee, who could not capitalise.
In the 49th Germany won their first penalty corner, while South Africa had earned three at that stage, and Hillmann made it 2-0 after a goalmouth scramble.
However, in the 63rd South Africa pulled a goal back with a great move down the left that involved Coetzee, Coston and Chamberlain in the final plays before Russell delivered the final strike (2-1).
The joy was brief as Germany restored their two-goal cushion two minutes later (65th) when Mavers bagged a second (3-1).