Winning is name of the game for UP basketball team
There is a good reason for their optimism. Last year Tuks were seen as no-hopers, but the players forgot to read the tournament script and ended up finishing fourth.
Tuks captain Varaidzo Sabeta admits that they were highly-motivated last year.
“The best thing that could have happened to us was being written off by many before we even took to the court. It meant we had a point to prove. For the duration of the tournament, every player kept on pushing the boundaries.
“In the end, we were rewarded for our gutsy play. Now we know that as a team we can contest against the best. It is why we believe that we can go one better this time around.”
Tuks are in the same group as the University of Joburg, University of Limpopo and Fort Hare University.
Sabeta is short for a basketball player, but she is quick to point out that looks can be deceiving.
“What I might lack in centimetres I make up with tactical savvy. I play point guard which means I am the playmaker on the court. It requires solid ball-handling skills.”
Tove Moreau is of the opinion that one of the Tuks team’s strong points is their defensive play.
“It seems we can disrupt the opposing team’s plans on the attack.”
Wits are the defending champions and Tuks played them earlier this season. “Although we lost I felt we were in contention for the duration of the game and that is exciting,” said Sabeta.
Neo Mothiba, who coaches the Tuks men’s team, admits that his team underperformed last year.
“We lost a couple of crucial games at the start of the tournament and could not recover after that. It led to us ending up contesting for the lower positions during the tournament.
“I am confident that this time around the team will do better. The team members have changed quite a lot from last year, and the new players are highly-motivated.”
- African News Agency (ANA)