Blend of youth and experience in Team SA squad for Ghana

A squad of 214 athletes and 45 officials will proudly represent South Africa at this year’s 13th edition of the African Games to be held in Accra, Ghana from... Read more
Blend of youth and experience in Team SA squad for Ghana

A squad of 214 athletes and 45 officials will proudly represent South Africa at this year’s 13th edition of the African Games to be held in Accra, Ghana from 8-23 March.

These will be the eighth African Games attended by Team SA, having returned from isolation to be at the 1995 instalment in Harare, Zimbabwe

Team SA will be represented across 17 different sports in Ghana, including, for the first time at a multi-code Games, Arm Wrestling and Cricket. Eight of these sporting codes (Athletics, Badminton, Cycling, Swimming, Table Tennis, Tennis, Triathlon and Wrestling) are Paris 2024 Olympics qualification events. 

At the last African Games held in Rabat, Morocco, in 2019 South Africa achieved a total of 86 medals (36 Gold, 26 Silver and 24 Bronze) across 11 different sporting codes, finishing 4th on the medals table. 

The sports with the most representatives in the team going to Ghana are Athletics (40), Hockey (36 involving the men and women), 29 from Cricket (also men’s and women’s teams), 23 from Swimming and 10 from Cycling.

With some of the sporting codes planning to host their National Championships in April, a number of the experienced athletes will not be available for the games in Ghana. The African Games therefore provide an opportunity for several younger athletes to gain international experience at the highest level on the continent. There is, as a result, a large sprinkling of youth in the squad. 

There are a number of Olympians from Tokyo 2020 in the squad – Michaela Whitebooi (Judo) and athletes Jo-Ane van Dyk and Antonio Alkana included. The latter represented Team SA in the men’s 110m hurdles at both the Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020 Olympics and the 33-year-old will be called upon to use all his experience to win a medal for his country.

Whitebooi carried the South African flag in the opening ceremony in Morocco in 2019 and she went on to earn the silver medal in the women’s judo 48kg category. 

There is one gold medallist from the last African Games returning to see if he can make it a double – high jumper Mpho Links.

Other Games medallists from Morocco returning for the 2023 edition include athletes van Dyk (silver in the women’s javelin) and bronze medallists Taylon Bieldt (women’s 100m hurdles) and Ischke Senekal (women’s Discus).

“These Games are vitally important to Team SA and we are fully committed to sending the best available team to Ghana,” said SASCOC president Barry Hendricks. “It is a big squad that shows the commitment South Africa has to competing in the major African events, while also providing opportunities for athletes to compete at the highest level. We congratulate each and every member of the squad on their selection.

“The African Games have historically been a successful springboard for Team SA athletes who have gone on to claim world championship and international glory. All of Penny Heyns (six golds in 1995 Harare and 1999 Johannesburg), Chad le Clos (9 golds across Maputo in 2011 and Brazzaville in 2015) and Caster Semenya (gold in 2015 in Brazzaville), were some of the African Games champions who were also Olympic gold medallists,” Hendricks added. 

The CEO of SASCOC, Nozipho Jafta, also offered her congratulations. “Every time an athlete puts on their national colours they do so with pride and the knowledge that they are representing their country. We are heading to Ghana with high hopes and expectations. The Games will be a highlight in many of the elite athletes’ careers and a springboard to even bigger and better things. These games are part of a bigger calendar for Team SA, as we look to the Sumer Games in Paris 2024 and LA 2028,” she added. 

These Games in Ghana were scheduled for the second half of 2023, but were postponed until 2024 due to unforeseen circumstances.

The team will depart from South Africa at staggered intervals, with the first code leaving on 27 February and the larger contingent departing on 5 March.

THE SQUAD

ARM WRESTLING (6)

Men
Alec Durand, Kobus Fourie, James Kruger, Johannes Nel

Women
Rosemary Botha, Meri Prinsloo
Management: Wilhelm Bronkhorst, Lee Smith

ATHLETICS (40)

Men

Antonio Alkana, Alan Cumming, Keegan Fourie, Lindukuhle Gora, Victor Hogan, Gardeo Isaacs, Mpho Links, Precious Mashele, Asande Mthembu, Sizwe Nbebele, Anele Nzqanzwa, Friedrich Pretorius, Francois Prinsloo, Tumisang Shezi, Valco van Wyk

Women
Taylon Bieldt, Miranda Coetzee, Ashley Erasmus, Marione Fourie, Zeney Geldenhuys, Jessica Groenewald, Nicole Janse van Rensburg, Phindile Kubheka, Joviale Mbisha, Nwabisa Mjoli, Shirley Nekhubui, Cian Oldknow, Mire Reinstorf, Ischke Senekal, Banele Shabangu, Yolandi Stander, Angelique Strydom, Tonet Tallie, Tamzin Thomas, Collett Uys, Mckyla van der Westhuizen, Jo-Ane van Dyk, Jana van Schalkwyk, Shannon Verster, Marli Viljoen

BADMINTON (8)

Men
Cameron Coetzer, Jarred Elliott, Caden Kakora, Robert Summers

Women
Amy Ackerman, Deidre Laurens, Diane Olivier, Johanita Scholtz
Management: Stewart Carson, Brenda Boshoff

BEACH VOLLEYBALL (2)

Men
Leo Williams, Danilo Von Ludwiger
Management: Adam Maskell

BOXING (8)

Men
Simnikiwe Bongco, Amzolele Dyeyi, Lubabalo Lusizi, John Masamnba, Sinovuyo Mthintelwa, Sanele Sogcwayi

Women
Thandolwethu Mathiba, Phiwokuhle Mnguni
Management: Nkosinati Hlatswayo, Mzikayise Damesi, Noluvo Joxo

CHESS (4)

Men
Caleb Levitan, Banele Mhango

Women
Jesse February, Anzel Laubscher
Management: Johannes Mabusela, Andre Lewaks

CRICKET (29)

Men
Dylan Bester, Lehan Botha, Hardus Coetzer, Ethan Fosler, Maahir Joseph, Lifa Ntanzi, Minenhle Ntobela, Heinrich Pieterse, Jesse Prodehl, Jason Raubenheimer, Nathan Roux, Lwandi Tywaku, George van Heerden, Aohiwe Yako
Management: Joseph Ntseke, Hannah Brevis, Conrad De Swardt, Bongani Ntini, Blanche Conradie

Women
Nobulumko Baneti, Joy Botha, Annerie Dercksen, Jenna Evans, Ghandi Jafta, Leah Jones, Simone Lourens, Karabo Meso, Seshine Naidu, Kayla Reyneke, Nondumiso Shangase, Miane Smith, Faye Tunnicliffe, Jane Winster, Caitlin Wyngaard
Management: Denisha Devnarain, Marcia Letsoalo, Claire Terblanche, Ester Bhengu, Gabi-Lee van der Westhuizen

CYCLING (10)

Men
Brandon Downes, Daniyal Matthews, Blaine Kieck, Tiano Da Silva, Dillion Geary

Women
Sonica Klopper, Maude le Roux, Hayley Preen, Lucy Young, Anika Visser
Management: Cindy Bezuidenhout, Nico Dunn

HOCKEY (36)

Men
Idrees Abdulla, Connor Beauchamp, Calvin Davis, Brendan du Toit, Kamva Fyakala, Chad Futcher, Eldrich Jacobs, Luthando Jonas, Zenani Kraai, Delpiarro Langford, Cameron le Forestier, Ryan Mann, Hans Neethling, Senswesihle Ngubane, Tevin Petersen, Clayton Sayker, Jacques van Tonder, Angelo Walstroom
Management: Cheslyn Gie, Sihle Ntuli, Devon van der Merwe, Donavin George
Added team official: Miles Usher

Women
Taheera Augousti, Quanita Bobbs, Dirkie Chamberlain, Erin Christie, Kayla de Waal, Aphiwe Dimba, Paris-Gail Isaacs, Tarryn Lombard, Antonette Louw, Ntsopa Mokoena, Edith Molikoe, Hannah Pearce, Rheabetswe Phume, Celia Seerane, Kayla Swarts, Anelle van Deventer, Bianca Wood, Onthatile Zulu
Management: Lyn Abrahamse, Giles Bonnet, Marcelle Keet, Nkuliso Zondi
Added team official: Wayne Lombard

JUDO (8)

Men
Thomas Breytenbach, Timothy Meuwsen, Lwazi Mapitiza, Mosa Thetsane

Women
Donne Breytenbach, Charme Griesel, Jasmin Martin, Michaela Whitebooi
Management: Gerald Vena, Theresa Mihalik

KARATE (9)

Men
Bradley Ho-Tong, Pelebe Kobose, Sibingiseni Ngwenya, Jesse Sim, Gray Tyrone, Jody Williams

Women
Marinda Roetz, Danielle van Wyk, Maxine Willemse
Management: Khumalo Njabulo, Janita Lakaram

SWIMMING (23)

Men
Muhammed Adam, Matthew Caldwell, Cameron Casali, Jarden Eaton, Clayton Jimmie, Owethu Mahan, Tumelo Mahan, Helgaard Muller, Kaydn Naidoo, Jonah Pool-Jones, Andrew Ross, Petrus Truter, Liam Vehni

Women
Caitlin de Lange, Georgia Els, Taylor Jonker, Leigh McMorran, Kate Meyer, Simone Moll, Hannah Mouton, Tasnim Nabbie, Tamzyn Robson, Catherine van Rensburg
Management: Qhakazile Nzama, Katlego Monnaemang, Cedric Finch, Garth Tune, Ancheri Luus

TABLE TENNIS (8)

Men
Luke Abrahams, Liam Beukes, Cowen Lodewyk, Chetan Nathoo
Non-travelling reserve: Dean Levy

Women
Lailaa Edwards, Mushfiquh Kalaam, Danisha Patel, Roschika Sonday
Non-travelling reserve: Simeen Mookery
Management: Sipho Vika, Anver Lyners

TENNIS (7)

Men
Kholowam Montsi, Siphos Montsi, Leo Matthysen

Women
Isabelle Kruger, Zoe Kruger, Kaitlyn Ramduth, Mari-Louise van Zyl
Management: Roxanne Clark, Khotso Matshego

TRIATHLON (4)

Men
Nicholas Quenet, Jamie Riddle

Women
Shanae Williams, Vicky van der Merwe
Management: Riana Robertson, Raymond Radebe

WEIGHTLIFTING (5)

Men
Ruben Burger, Jon-Antohein Phillips, Willem Swart

Women
Laryne Jefferies, Anneke Spies
Management: Rondney Anthony, Matthew Hurn

WRESTLING (6)

Men
Marias Hattingh, Michael Mhlanga, Ben Theron

Women
Minette Kruger, Lillian Mbena, Bea Meiring
Management: Rudi Botha, Marcus Dekker

Past Performances

Medals by colour

Gold: 397
Silver: 362
Bronze: 291
Total medals: 1050

Medals by Year

1995: 64 gold 51 silver 39 bronze (154 total, 1st on medals table)
1999: 71 gold 64 silver 49 bronze (184 total, 1st on medals table)
2003: 63 gold 59 silver 49 bronze (171 total, 3rd on medals table)
2007: 64 gold 66 silver 53 bronze (180 total, 3rd on medals table)
2011: 61 gold, 55 silver 40 bronze (156 total, 1st on medals table)
2015: 41 gold, 41 silver 37 bronze (119 total, 3rd on medals table)
2019: 36 gold, 26 silver 24 bronze (86 total, 4th on medals table)

Issued by SASCOC

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