Amawheelies fighting to bitter end!

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Day Three (3) of the 2017 Under 23 World Wheelchair Basketball Championships dawned for the Sasol Amawheelies as they came up current Pool B log leaders from the “Land of the Rising Sun”, Japan.

Kwa-Zulu Natal Wheelchair Marlins player, Simingaye Shabalala and Mandeville Eagles youngster, Warren Tefu had struggled to impress in the previous games, however the pair, put in a much more spirited performance against Japan and were the two players to impress in the game.

The Japanese though were on a high after defeating pre-tournament favourites Great Britain, in a nail biting encounter on Friday, whilst the South Africans were feeling somewhat deflated on the back of two heavy defeats to Germany and France.

Realising that the task at hand would be a daunting one for the youngsters from Mzansi, Coach Allen Mtatase and his Assistant Gerry Smith did their outmost to keep the team spirit up and encouraged our boys to play hard, while trying to enjoy themselves in the process.

Despite taking the early lead through, Eastern Cape Suns Guard Ayabonga Jim, the Japanese didn’t take long to get into their stride, and were clinical with their play, forcing numerous turn overs by the South Africans. The quarter ended ominously for the Amawheelies with Japan leading 26-9.

It was wave after wave of attack from the Japanese, whose accurate shooting and fast transition play was far too much for the inexperienced South African’s to contend with and despite a spirited last stand in the 4th quarter, the Japanese ran out convincing 94-28 winners.

Turnovers have cost the South African’s dearly throughout the tournament and the Japanese made the South African pay for this again, converting 17 ill afforded points. Another concern for Coach Mtatase was the inability of his chargers to convert more chances and the case in point in this encounter was the 12/63 shots converted (19%). This is what the young South Africans will need to vastly improve if they are to compete against the more fancied sides.

For detailed Match Stats click on this link: http://www.fibalivestats.com/u/IWBFW/615696/index.html. Simingaye Shabalala, however played his heart out and his efforts were rewarded with his awarding of the Man of the Match Award at the end of the game.

The offensive continues early Sunday morning, as the Amawheelies come up against the favourites, Great Britain. Nonetheless our boys will fight to till the end for the Green and Gold. Live streaming available on: sportscanada.tv/u23wwbc

Additional Info: SA Fixtures in Group B

Session

Game

Match

Pool

Group

Canada Time

RSA Time

Home

Away

Day 4 – Sunday, 11 June 2017

1

19

B

08:00-10:00

14:00-16:00

Great Britain

RSA

Day 5 – Monday, 12 June 2017

1

27

B

12:00-14:00

18:00-20:00

USA

RSA

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