The past weekend saw the culmination of a three-day programme designed to determine the selection of the South African wheelchair basketball squad.
This in preparation for the 2019 IWBF Africa Paralympic Qualifiers and subsequent 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games.
The training camp took place at the Mandeville Indoor Sports Centre and involved a series of biometric testing, skills development and a competitive match between the current Sasol AmaWheelaBoys and those trying to break their way into the team. A 16-man squad was announced by head coach Lydia Dumond, who will now form the core group through the team’s preparations.
Dumond said she was pleased with the level of commitment on display over the past weekend. “The players showed real hunger and determination to secure their place on the squad, which was heartening. “We want to work hard and ensure we are in the best shape possible ahead of next year’s Paralympic qualifiers. I have full confidence in the squad we have assembled and am sure they will do South Africa proud over the coming year.”
The squad, which will now begin building towards the 2019 Paralympic qualifiers in earnest, was announced on Saturday evening and consists of a mix of exciting young talent and experience. The High-Performance Coaching Commission, tasked with making the selection, named three uncapped players, Sipho Ike Monti, Simangaye Shabalala and Bonginkosi Witbooi who will be looking to impress alongside the likes of stalwarts Cecil Dumond and Thandile Zonke.
Sasol AmawheelaBoys National Squad:
1. Christiaan Bronkhorst – Gauteng
2. Cecil Dumond (captain) – North West
3. Kyle Bowles – KwaZulu-Natal
4. Allen Mtatase – Gauteng
5. Mgcini Mzileni – Eastern Cape
6. Jaco van Niekerk – Gauteng
7. Raketsing Molete – North West
8. Thandile Zonke (vice captain) – Gauteng
9. Shane Williams – Western
10.Sifiso Gama – Gauteng
11.Thabane Tshange – KwaZulu- Natal
12. Simanga Mbhele – North West
13. Lwando Mamfengu – Gauteng
14. Bonginkosi Witbooi – North West
15. Simangaye Shabalala – KwaZulu-Natal
16. Sipho Ike Monti – Gauteng.