Women's World League: Ireland women's World Cup hopes hit by South Africa defeat

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Ireland lost 3-0 to tournament hosts South Africa

Ireland women's World Cup qualification hopes now look to be out of their own hands following Thursday's 3-0 defeat by South Africa in Johannesburg.

Victory in the fifth-to-eighth place at the World League tournament game would have secured Ireland's World Cup spot.

A win in Saturday's seventh and eighth place game against India could still prove enough for the Irish to qualify.

But they will be depending on results to go their way at the upcoming Continental Championships.

Victory at the European Championships later this year would also secure Ireland's World Cup qualification but that looks a remote prospect judging by their performance on Thursday.

Lisa Deetlefs put the hosts ahead late in the first half before the Irish missed a chance a great chance to level as Roisin Upton hit the post from a penalty stroke with the South African keeper beaten.

Anna O'Flanagan went close to levelling in the third quarter as the Irish bossed possession.

However, South Africa doubled their lead early in the final quarter as Bernadette Coston hammered to the net after Anna Matthews had lost possession near her own goals.

Opting to go for broke, Ireland withdrew their keeper Ayeisha McFerran as they introduced Shirley McKay as a kicking back but another defensive mix up saw Lilian du Plessis netting the South Africans' third goal.

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