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Water Polo Women, Day 1: CHN 17 RSA 2
World League champion China continued its winning streak beyond the excellent effort in Beijing last month when it collected its first international gold medal at the senior level. South Africa, an intermittent performer on the world stage, was not over-awed and pressured China at the attacking end, which brought success in the final quarter.
It was China’s counter attack that proved fatal for the “girls in green”. The “red tide” sent in four goals in each of the first two quarters and five in the third with Huanhuan Ma scoring two more to take her bag to five. What was unusual was that Ma was caught out of position on several occasions, but still managed to convert.
South Africa still wanted goals, but the bigger, taller and stronger Chinese, with seven players having contested more than 200 internationals proved a handful. South Africa’s most experienced player, Lee-Anne Keet, was playing in just her 23rd senior international match. S
he raised the spirits of her supporters when she scored from two metres with a sweeping shot with 4:50 left in the game and 14-1. China, however, stung by the goal, reacted quickly through two Fei Teng goals.
Marcelle Keet, the younger sister of Lee-Anne and also an international hockey player, scored from outside at 2:34 for 16-2. China closed the game through Jin He in the final second for 17-2.
Match 4: 12:10, Group B, CHINA 17 SOUTH AFRICA 2
Quarters: 4-0, 4-0, 5-0, 4-2
Referees: Amber Drury (USA), Brian Littlejohn (GBR)
Extra Man: CHN: 7/7. RSA: 0/2
Pens: CHN: 1/1
CHINA: Jun Yang, Fei Teng (2), Ping Liu, Yujun Sun (1), Jin He (2), Yating Sun (2), Donglun Song (3), Lu Xu (2), Xiaohan Mei, Huanhuan Ma (5), Cong Zhang, Qun Xia, Ying Wang. Head Coach: Alexander Kleymenov.
SOUTH AFRICA: Anke Jacobs, Kimberley Schmidt, Kieren Paley, Christ Rawstrom, Megan Schooling, Taryn Schooling, Kimberley Kay, Lee-Anne Keet (1), Delaine Christian, Marcelle Keet (1`) , Lindsay Killeen, Kelsey White, Thembelihle Mkhize. Head Coach: Brad Rowe.
Huanhuan Ma (CHN):
“We played well. We are playing match after match. The next one is against Australia, so it is a very important one. I am happy to have scored a few times and wish to do better and better.”
Jun Yang (CHN):
“Here we don´t feel the pressure we had in Shanghai. We have confidence in our new coach. I have been preparing myself for 10 years; this is my fifth (FINA World) championship.”
Kelsey White (RSA):
“We knew that China was a great team. I expected such a result ”
Kimberly Kay (RSA):
“It was a very difficult match, but we are going to try to win the competition.
We tried to play our best, but we know that China is number 1. We hope to have a great competition, but we have a hard pool.”
Kieran Paley (RSA):
“It was a very difficult match, but we work harder doing an improvement on the second part. I am satisfied with our effort.”