Pakistan Beat South Africa 2-0 x2|
May 29, 2005
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Pakistan overcame the absence of their skipper, Muhammad Saqlain and kept their quest to be in the top two on course when they beat South Africa 2-0 in the 14th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup hockey tournament at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil here Sunday.
However, it was South Africa who took off in an attacking mode and started pounding the Pakistanis. Pakistan capitalising on rebounds got their first goal in the 25th minute through Shakeel Abbasi.
Pakistan got their second five minutes later when Rehan Butt dribbled past three defenders and beat goalkeeper, Chris Hibbert before hitting the ball into the South Africans cage.
After the halftime break, the South Africans tried their very best to get a shot at goal but their forwards ended up hitting wide.
"We did miss not having Saqlain around, but the boys overcame it after the first few minutes. We are fortunate to get the three points.
"Tougher matches against India, Australia and Malaysia are still ahead of us. The boys are gaining better confidence after each match, so I think we should be ready by the time we meet them," said Pakistani coach Tahir Zaman.
Pakistan's first 11 - Salman Akhbar, Zeeshan Asraf, Imran Khan, Adnan Masood, Dilawar Hussain, Rehan Butt, Mohamad Imran, Shakeel Abbasi, Tariq Aziz, Adnan Zakir, Akhtar Ali.
South Arica's first 11: Chris Hibbert, Ken Forbes, Bruce Jacobs, Emile Smith, Steve Phillips, Eric Rose-Innes, Andrew Gronje, John McInroy, Ian Symons, Justin King, Craig Fulton.
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