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News > Sports > ODs represent SA mens hockey in Stellenbosch

ODs represent SA mens hockey in Stellenbosch

Ryan Julius (2013K), Alex Stewart (2013O) and Dayaan Cassiem (2017W) will all be representing South Africa at Africa Cup of Nations in Stellenbosch this week.
12 Aug 2019
Sports
Dayaan Cassiem (left), Ryan Julius (middle) and Alex Stewart (right).
Dayaan Cassiem (left), Ryan Julius (middle) and Alex Stewart (right).
ODs represent SA mens hockey in Stellenbosch

Ryan Julius (2013K), Alex Stewart (2013O) and Dayaan Cassiem (2017W) will all be representing South Africa at Africa Cup of Nations in Stellenbosch this week.

The tournament, which acts as qualifying competition for the Tokyo Olympics due to take place next year, includes Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Namibia and Zimbabwe.

"Bishops instilled the training discipline and continuous self evaluation to work on different areas of my game. The focus and commitment towards the team was key towards the success of the team. The comraderie amongst players for motivation when things don't always work within the game is important. Being a youngster coming into a structured senior team can become overwhelming and being a junior playing in a senior team at Bishops has help me to navigate my way and adapt to the structures of senior teams. It helps you grow as a person and improves the skill you have," explains Cassiem when reminiscing about his time at Bishops.  

“It feels a lot more nerve-racking but doesn’t feel as intense. I have played so many big games on this turf, so it is nothing new. It is special though, you don’t get too many competitions like this on your home turf,” says Stewart,, when asked what it meant to play at his home ground. Stewart captained both his Matric Bishops team and Maties hockey team. 

Even though South Africa have beaten Namibia 3-1 and neigbours Zimbabwe 9-0, he is under no illusions of what this tournament means.

“There is of course added pressure. The bottom line is we have to win. If we don’t win, we don’t qualify [2020 Tokyo Olympics], that’s it. There is huge pressure. Egypt are playing very well, they have been overseas and beat Ireland, so yeah there is huge added pressure. We are at home, so a lot of people expect us to win.” says Stewart.

According to the FIH world rankings, South Africa are the highest ranked side at this year’s tournament at 14th in the World, with Egypt the second highest ranked side at 20.

Ryan, Alex and Dayaan would appreciate any and all support this week.

All games are being played at Stellenbosch Astro this week. The full list of games are found below.

12 August: South Africa 3-1 Namibia

13 August: South Africa 9-0 Zimbabwe.

15 August: South Africa vs Ghana 17:00. 

17 August South Africa vs Kenya 17:00. 

18 August South Africa vs Egypt 17:00. 

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