Amawheelies jetted off to 2017 Men’s U23 World Wheelchair Basketball Championship to represent Africa!

Sunday, 4 June 2017

The nation’s pride “Sasol Amawheelies” jetted off on Sunday evening, 04 June 2017 to this year’s Men’s U23 World Wheelchair Basketball Championship taking place from June 08-16 in Toronto, Ontario Canada - to represent the entire African continent.

As the official winners of the 2016 U23 Africa Championship Qualifiers - this young and enthusiastic U23 Men’s Wheelchair Basketball team is looking to improve on the best-ever finish of 11th in the World Championships.

This is despite having a young squad Head Coach Allen Mtatase who says that he is very confident that the team is more than capable and ready to cause a few headaches for some of their more fancied opponents.

This year’s Men’s U23 World Championship marks the 20-year anniversary since Canada hosted the inaugural world championship for junior men in 1997 in Toronto. Wheelchair Basketball Canada will - in partnership with the International Wheelchair Basketball Federation (IWBF) - be hosting world-class athletes representing 12 nations, including the host Canada.

All these teams will converge at the Mattamy Athletic Centre in downtown Toronto to showcase the elite skill and athleticism that make wheelchair basketball a thrilling spectator sport and one of the most popular sports for athletes with a disability in the world.

Sasol Amawheelies will be camping at the Mattamy Athletic Centre from Tuesday, 06 June 2017; where they will finalise their preparation for the first game on Thursday, 08 June against Germany U23’s national team. This first game is deemed as one of the toughest for Amawheelies because the German U23 national team enters this year’s Championship on a high note. As the reigning world champions from 2013, Germany is one of the teams to beat in Toronto.

Nozipho Mbatha, Sasol Group Brand Marketing Manager says: “We are confident that Sasol Amawheelies are going into this championship with a great deal of confidence that they will give it their all and prove to the entire continent that they are not only the nation’s pride in South Africa, but an inspiration to all Africans.

“As Sasol, our long-standing partnership with Wheelchair Basketball South Africa (WBSA) re-affirms our commitment to this developmental sport (wheelchair basketball). This partnership allows us to continue affording people with disabilities with opportunities to compete in local and international championships such as this one.

This year’s championship takes place at a very opportune time in June when South Africa celebrates and commemorates its Youth Month. Gerry Smith, WBSA Team Manager echoes the sentiments of Sasol that Amawheelies are a positive inspiration to all youth in South Africa and beyond. “This team’s passion and dedication is a true testament that through hard work, dedication and a positive attitude, every dream is possible.”

Sasol takes exceptional pride in the significant role that it has been able to play in raising the profile of sport for people with disabilities and the development of wheelchair basketball in South Africa.

© COPYRIGHT 2013 Sasol in Sport - Wheelchair Basketball