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SA ladies team camp at HPC

By on February 13, 2009 in News

Sitting on the sidelines watching Coach Craig Daniels and Brenda Mutungutungu put the team through their paces, you could see that the ladies had determination on their faces with the knowledge that this was an opportunity not to be missed to qualify for a major tournament in 2009. After arriving in Tshwane on Wednesday night for the first camp, the ladies had a settled routine after securing the St Mary’s DSG court for their practices and sorting out their accommodation at the University of Pretoria High Performance Center. With 15 players pitching up for the camp, the coach had a good blend of youth and experience with 2 players from the U20 making the camp. With a team of decent height, the shooting, defensive intensity and desire will have to be on point if they are going to make it to the African Championship in Lybia. With the team having only one more camp on the 4th of march, before they head to Zimbabwe on March 26 2009, the coaches had to do a lot of ground work during this camp.

With the team practicing very early in the morning and late in the afternoon, it was nice to see players giving their all during the sessions. But the team doctor had his hands full with the niggling injuries that some of the players were carrying or that they picked up due to the lack of such intense activity. Mybasketball sat down and discussed the camp with the coaches: Craig Daniels (C) – Head coach, Brenda Mutungutungu (B) and team manager Oumakie Moruthane (O).Mybasketball: What are your aims at this camp?

Craig (C): I wanted to see who fits into the system of play that we, as coaches are trying to implement. We wanted to introduce offensive principles to the team because after watching the games at the Senior tournament I realized that it was lacking in the ladies game.

Brenda (B): See how fit the players are and see if we can prepare them well before the qualifying tournament. Work on our defensive strategy and mental preparation so that the girls know what to expect when they go to the tournament.

Mybasketball: How is the balance of the team?

C: I am happy with the team; we have girls that are athletic and skillful. Most of the players have been involved at junior levels so they know what they will be faced with in Zimbabwe. I gave the girls a program to do before the camp and I am satisfied that they reached some of the targets that I set for them.

B: Very happy with the group and I hope that we will do better this time around but it would have been nice to start our preparations earlier. We have positive expectations for the team but we are also cautious.

Mybasketball: What are the challenges leading up and during the camp?

C: Communication is still an issue. The manager of the team should come to the camp destination before the team arrives to sort out venues, accommodation and accreditation. The manager should be involved with the planning of the camp so that potential problems are picked up before the squad arrives. Otherwise things are duplicated.  As far as venue is concerned, the St Mary’s court made up for the confusion of the first training day. Otherwise BSA tried to meet most of the requests made by the coaches and the players.

B: Organization was just fine but we had an issue with the venue at first. The practice kit should be available on day 1 and the fact that we don’t have one is worrying. Only 2 camps before a major tournament are not enough but at the moment BSA has a few things to sort out. SA lacks a development program to bridge the gap between the junior and senior teams. BSA should enable some of the senior coaches the opportunity to share their knowledge by having a Coaches commission or a forum.

Oumakie: The change of venue was an issue for both teams but everything else was fine. We had an incident where one girl fell on her head and got concussed and the doctor was not available yet so it was a situation I had to deal with. The coaches are happy with the players and the preparations so far and the group is united but there are a few players missing due to studies and work so BSA should look at announcing these camps and tournaments well in advance..

Mybasketball: What is the plan for the next camp?

C: We will look at fixing a few of the team issues on defense, work at improving our system of play. I am looking at organizing a few friendlies to get the girls ready for the physical challenge ahead of them.

B: Work on our set plays and the team chemistry. We will be working with the team going to Zimbabwe so we will get a chance to sort out our starting 5, etc…

With the team being trimmed to 12, the girls played their hearts out during the scrimmages on the last day. By Sunday, the coaches had an idea of the team so they could work on combinations. The 3 players not travelling with the team were told the night before but still form part of the setup as reserves.

The final team for Zimbabwe qualifiers 2009:

1. Eastern Cape Province Nosipho Njokweni
2. Free State Province Philadelphia Khoabane
3. Free State Province Seipati Mokhathi
4. Gauteng Province Phumla Sathula
5. Gauteng Province Lungile Mtsweni
6. Gauteng Province Tuki Modiselle
7. Gauteng Province Ellen Moutlatswe
8. Gauteng Province Takalani Mafamadi
9. Limpopo Province Emmerentia Ledwaba
10. Limpopo Province Phuthi Mosehlane
11. Limpopo Province Requelh Molema
12. Western Cape Province Veronica Samuels



1. Limpopo Province Matlala Mokoko
2. Gauteng Province Makhotso Moloantoa
3. Eastern Cape Aretha Gatywa

Article by Victor Shakineza, pictures by Julia Harms, Danny Malothane and Kobie van Jaarsveld

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  1. kim says:

    Good luck for the team and I hope ALL South Africans can be behind you gals.Lets go and do this….