A SPIRITED second-half display was not enough to stop the South African men’s hockey side going down 4-2 to a skilful and powerful Argentina at the Riverside House Sports Club in Durban last night.
First-half goals from Pedro Ibarra and Facundo Callioni for the visitors would make it 2-0 at the interval, and when Lucas Vila made it 3-0 just after the restart, SA seemed dead and buried.
But Craig Haley pulled one back for the hosts on 38 minutes before Taine Paton made it 3-2 just two minutes later, making things interesting.
SA clung on with some admirable defence, and goalkeeper Rassie Pieterse sent the crowd delirious when he stopped a Vila penalty flick diving low and to his right to keep SA in the match. But the contest was over with four minutes remaining when Juan Martin Lopez made it 4-2.
SA play the second of five Tests against Argentina today at Kearsney College.