South Africa's basketball community

Road to AfroBasket 2017: SA team preparations… Non-existent yet

By on August 12, 2017 in News

With all the euphoria of the NBA Africa game that was played at the beginning of August, some of us might have forgotten that there is the 29th Edition of the AfroBasket tournament taking place this year in Tunisia and Senegal on the 8th of September.

With South Africa qualifying for this tournament, there has been little to no preparation leading up to the tournament while other teams have been in camp. The only semblance of preparation the team has had is the BRICS games and that was about 2 months ago and some of the key members of the team were either injured or couldn’t get off work in time to take part. 

Since then… Nothing… No training camp, No games, No communication from BSA around the matter…

So what has the team been up to since then? Well, the players have been doing individual training programs with their local teams and taking part in tournaments. And the coaches? Well, the coaches are doing what coaches do best, coaching their local teams or university teams. Other teams have been building some of their team chemistry and cohesion for the last 2 months; working on defensive and offensive plays and fine tuning their games in competitive tournaments around the world.

So who is to blame for this situation? It’s name is MONEY $$$… I suppose that Basketball South Africa has the will but not the means to have a camp so they are either waiting on the government (Department of Sports and Recreation and South Africa Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC)) to come and assist in this regard and that’s probably where there is a bottle neck and its’ taking time for these funds to materialise. The longer this goes on, the chances of the South African team going to the tournament and being competitive diminishes.

Some of the overseas players are questioning whether they should be part of this set up but their energy and experience would add so much more to the already talented group of players at the coaches’ disposal. Basketball is alive on the continent and South Africa will be in for a tough time against their African counterparts that have some of their European and American based players at their disposal.

With all this chaos let’s hope that there is still enough time for the team to get their preparations under way to represent South Africa in the best possible way. There is less than a month to go before the first game is played and realistically the players need to be in camp in the coming week.


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