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SCOOP Olympic Update, Thursday 21 Sept, 2000

Published: Thu 21 Sep 2000 09:06 PM
SCOOP Olympic Update, Thursday 21 Sept, 2000
Article: Mathew Loh
A MOMENT of sheer sporting genius by Mandy Smith earned her team a crucial 1-0 win over South Africa at the Sydney Olympiad tonight.
Minutes after the hard-working New Zealand team was deflated when a deflected go-ahead goal by skipper Kylie Foy was disallowed Smith split the South Africans open on a brilliant run down the right.
The star attacker revealed sublime stick skills and superb pace as she left five defenders for dead before playing a one-two and on receiving the return pass hitting the winning goal past a hapless South African keeper.
Then it was left to the tenacious New Zealand defence led by the likes of Skippy Hamahona and Caryn Paewai to tough it out and as they did for the entire game they maintained their composure and shut the South Africans down.
And even if the South African's got a shot on goal they then had to beat inspirational Kiwi goalkeeper Helen Clarke who again demonstrated her class as one of the best in her position in the game.
With the win the Jan Borren coached team finishs top of their group and by maintaining their game-by-game improvement should mount a very strong challenge for medals against expected competition from Germany, Australia, China and the Netherlands.

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