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SASSU Send-off tournament report

By on June 26, 2008 in News

The SASSU tournament is around the corner and teams are doing the final preparations for the competition. The Gauteng Basketball Association held a send off tournament for the Gauteng teams that will be heading off to Cape Town at the end off this week. On the 22nd of June, Wembly Stadium hosted the tournament and the people who were on the stands were the participants, the officials and the very few spectators that were there.

The first game of the day was the Tuks Ladies vs. The Gauteng All Stars. The All Star team consisted mainly of the Raptors team, who have beaten Tuks before in one of their GBL games. The cold hall got the better of both teams as they didn’t show any pazaz offensively, defensively the All Stars out played Tuks; playing pressure defense on them, forcing a few turnovers from Tuks and creating their chance to win the opening game 53-39.

It wasn’t a good day for Tuks when their boys played their first game against the SASSU defending champs, Vaal. Tuks recruited Mathew Boonzaier aka “BIG BABY” as one of their big men down at the low post, with Kago Masisi shot blocks and Gino Anriaanse shooting. You would think that Tuks would give Vaal a good run for their money, but that wasn’t enough ammunition to beat them. Tshepo Matsie had a lot to carry on his shoulders as he was playing in theinfamous #12; the same number, ex-Vaal player, Neo Mothiba wore back when he was still at Vaal. The new recruit, had an awesome game and yet again Vaal came out victorious winning 94-39.

Though the spectator turn out was not the best we’ve seen to date; a few famous names like the likes of Emma Ledwaba and Raptors coach Nthato Selebi came through, “… The idea behind the tournament is good! The more games the teams play before a big competition, the better.” said Nthato Selebi. Even some of the UJ players came to catch one of the games though they were supposedly “writing exams” (the reason behind them not participating in the tournament.) Anywho…

The day went by and the finals were scheduled to be played, both Vaal teams were through to play the GSA teams. The ladies were up first but because of the long day both teams were very stagnant; the GSA ladies stood out at the end and won the final 46-31.

Next up was the best game of the day; when The Vaal University of Technology came head to head with the GSA team who featured the likes of Neo Mothiba, Nyakalo Nthuping and Egoli Magics’ Thabang Banda. The game was a neck on neck game, causing the Vaal coach, Flosh Ngwenya, to throw his toys at the crowd; it was also a mental game and the team who were strong psychologically would win the game.

The All Stars ran the floor very well and were leading 29-23 at the end of the first half. Vaal came back with a bang and played much better defense and capitalized on their counter attack. The All Stars defense was taking a back seat when Neo was on foul trouble giving “Yabayazi” a perfect opportunity to smoothly penetrate the key, and putting up the points for Vaal, with five seconds left and Vaal leading 63-58 The All Star coach, James Mthethwa, called a time out to come up with what we thought was going to be a miracle game plan. Neo made a 3 pointer; putting the All Stars at a deficit of 2 points. The All Stars played man to man defense hoping to get a stop that would tie the game. Unfortunately time was not on their side and the game ended off with Vaal wining 63-61…
What an amazing game from both sides!

Who’s gonna stop Vaal at SASSU? These boys can shoot, they can dunk, they can play defense. Will it be UJ or UWC or maybe even Maties? We will soon find out…
The SASSU tournament is going to be an interesting, thrilling tournament and all teams are going to bring their “A” game and the team that wants it the most will definitely win the whole thing.




1.Takalani Mfamadi (The University of Pretoria aka Tuks)

2.Zanele Peterson (Vaal University of Technology)

3.Gabsile Ngangamana (GSA)

4.Tuki Elizabeth Modiselle (GSA)


1.Thabang Banda ( GSA)

2.Ayanda Shange (Vaal University of Technology)

3.Benedict Ramakau (The University of Pretoria)

4.Kagiso Ngoetjana (GSA)

5.Thabang Gwedi (Vaal University of Technology)

Most Valuable Players (MVP)

Neo Mothiba (GSA)
Tuki Elizabeth Modiselle (GSA)

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