SPAR PROTEAS CONTINUES A CLEAN SWEEP AGAINST UGANDA The second meeting between South Africa and Uganda was arguably the match of the day with the SPAR Proteas yet to lose match after three games, Uganda won two and lost once coming into today’s match. Past performances between the two teams meant nothing on the day, it was always going to be a tough match.
Coach Badenhorst made one change to the team that started yesterday with Izette Griesel on the bench and Rome Joubert playing at centre. The SPAR Proteas got to feel the wrath of the She Cranes as soon as the game started however this did not deter the home team who went to end the first quarter leading 12-10. The Proteas applied more pressure during the second quarter however Uganda their shape did not give possession away cheaply. At the end of the quarter, both teams had scored eight points apiece and it was South Africa that led 20 – 18.
The introduction of Griesel and Chawane into the match was a game changer as they both countered the physicality of the Ugandan national team. The third quarter was a tough one for both teams as they were going at each other and Uganda scored 9 in response to South Africa’s 13. The defence of the SPAR Proteas kept the team in the game as they made sure that they intercepted the attack of Uganda, this was seen in the last quarter as they won 10 -9 and eventually winning the match 43 – 36.
The SPAR Proteas have now 4 out 4 matches unbeaten and they will go into their rest day full of confidence knowing that they have done what was needed. The SPAR Proteas will be back in action again on Tuesday when they take on Namibia in the late game of the day. “We knew Uganda would come in hard against us, because this was a very important game,” said SPAR Proteas coach Dorette Badenhorst. “They put a lot of pressure on us – especially the young players in the circles. But the more established players gave the newer players the backing they needed, and I am very pleased with the way the team is working together.” Ugandan captain Stella Oyella said the She-Cranes had put up a good fight and were learning every time they played against South Africa. “We are very much a team – our motto is ‘we are the She-Cranes, we are one,” said Oyella.
The third meeting between the SPAR Baby Proteas and President’s XII was nothing short of brilliant. Both teams kept cancelling each other out in the first three minutes as none of the teams managed to score in that period, it was the Baby SPAR Proteas that managed to score first and start applying the pressure to take a two point lead. One can never expect the President’s XII to sit back and absorb the pressure, they made sure that they come back and give as much as they were getting. The first 15 minutes of the match became a blow by blow affair however it was the President’s XII that took a lead of 14-9 at the end of the quarter. The SPAR Baby Proteas went on to the ascendency as soon as the second quarter started, they made sure that they throw everything to the President’s XII and leaving nothing to chance. This strategy worked as the Baby SPAR Proteas went on to win all the remaining quarters and cause an upset, they beat the President’s XII 48-41. This is their first win of the tournament.