The Sasol South African senior mens wheelchair basketball team have booked their place in the quarterfinals of the 2nd Agadir International Tournament in Morocco, by recording a comfortable 54-40 victory over Angola, in a Group B fixture.
The Sasol AmaWheelaBoys are set for a showdown against Morocco B, the bottom team from Group A in the last eight stage of the competition on Thursday afternoon.
National team head coach Franck Belen gave several of the younger players much game-time in the outing against Angola, as he stuck to his four-year development plan objective of building a younger team, following the retirement of several top players after the 2012 London Paralympics.
As much as we want to win our matches, we are focused on giving the younger players the opportunity to play international wheelchair basketball as we will need to qualify for the 2016 Rio Paralympics against similar competition via Africa next year, said Belen.
Reacting to the manner in which the national team played against Angola after being defeated by Morocco A the night before, Belen added: This is not foreign to us as we lost to Algeria in the group stages of the African Championships in Angola last November before showing courage and determination to reach the final where we were unlucky to go down to the Algerians again.Algeria will represent Africa at the IWBF World Championships in Korea next month.
Sasol South African Senior Mens Wheelchair Basketball Team:
Kyle Louw (Pumas Club, Free State), Jaco Velloen (Bladerunners Club, Gauteng North), Thabane Tshange (Wings Club, KwaZulu Natal), Luvuyo Mbande (Lions Club, North West), Shane Williams (Saints Club, Western Cape), Samuel van Niekerk (Pumas Club, Gauteng North), Cecil Dumond (Lions Club, Free State), Mpho Mooketsi (Mongoose Club, North West), Simanga Mbhele (Lions Club, North West), Steve Walgenbach (Bladerunners Club, Gauteng North), Lisolomzi Mazantsana (Eagles Club, Central Gauteng), Rakgetsing Molete (Lions Club, Free State)