It’s a wrap for the ten regional tournaments around KZN, with winners of each region now shifting their focus to the Grand Finals of the SPAR KZN School Girls Hockey Challenge that takes place at St Mary’s DSG in Kloof on 29 and 30 July.
The first team to secure their berth at the finals was Ferrum High School. The team from Newcastle is no stranger to the Grand Finals, having travelled to Durban six out of the seven years history of this tournament. They missed the 2016 tournament’s conclusion and will be eager to make an impact after a year’s break.
The two teams representing the Pietermaritzburg Central and Northern Regionals are St Anne’s College and St John’s DSG. Like Ferrum, this is St Anne’s sixth appearance and with a gold, three bronzes and a fourth place to their record, this positively puts them as one of the favourites. St John’s DSG take to the fields as the only newcomer this year, having toppled Pietermaritzburg Girls’ High School hold on the PMB Central Regional title, the only team to represent their region since the inception of the tournament.
The fourth team to secure their spot is the only team to have featured every year at the Grand Finals. The champions from the Durban Central Regional, Durban Girls College makes a welcome return and will be raring to reclaim the title, having raised the trophy three times. Adding to the list of success, two silvers and a fourth at this tournament.
Returning to the Grand Finals is Our Lady of Fatima. The team representing the Durban North Region has only once been to the Grand Finals, that being in 2011 for the inaugural tournament where they finished in fifth.
Back again, the first team from Amanzimtoti High School representing the Durban South Regional will be hoping to better their overall position having made it all the way for the third consecutive year. King Edward High School from the Ugu and Sisonke Regional will also be making their third consecutive appearance. Having a reputation as the giant slayer at the Grand Finals, the hard-working team are hoping to crack into the top half of the log.
Making a handful of appearances, winners of the Umvoti, uThukela and Umzinyathi Regional, Wartburg Kirchdorf School has been impressively improving through each of the finals. 2016 being the best yet where they finished fifth overall.
From the Highway Regional, the feisty team from St Mary’s DSG are the overall defending champions who have two golds to their name, two bronzes and a fourth in their five appearances. The host team dominated their regional and look in good form to go all the way for a third time.
The final team to make the Grand Finals is Grantleigh College. Grantleigh snuck into the final for the third time. The team representing the Northern Coast Region have had a consistent run in Durban, with two eighth positions from the inaugural tournament and again last year. Like all the other teams, they are hoping to better their performance this year.
Durban Girls’ College- Durban Central Regional Winner - Gold (2013, 2014, 2015), Silver (2012, 2016), Fourth (2011)
Ferrum High School – Northern KZN Regional Winner – Fifth (2012, 2015), Sixth (2011), Tenth 2013, 2014)
St Anne’s –Pietermaritzburg North Regional Winner - Gold (2011), Bronze (2014, 2015, 2016), Fourth (2013)
St Mary’s DSG – Highway Regional Winner - Gold (2012, 2016), Bronze (2011, 2013), Fourth (2015)
Wartburg Kirchdorf – Umvoti, uThukela and Umzinyathi Regional Winner - Eighth (2013), Ninth (2014), Sixth (2015), Fifth (2016)
Amanzimtoti High School – Durban South Regional Winner - Tenth (2015, 2016)
King Edward High School – Southern KZN Regional Winner - Eighth (2015), Sixth (2016)
Grantleigh – Northern Coastal Regional Winner - Eighth (2011, 2016)
Our Lady of Fatima - Durban North Regional Winner -Fifth (2011)
St John’s DSG