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Maties, UJ compete in Afro-Varsity 3x3 champs


Nairobi - Universities from across Africa competed in the third edition of the Africa University 3x3 Basketball Championship that took place from 27 - 28 April 2019 in Nairobi, Kenya. South Africa was represented by the University of Johannesburg and Stellenbosch University.

The highly contested champs, also known as the Afro-Varsity 3x3 Challenge, kicked-off on Saturday afternoon directly after the official opening of the games. Newly elected President of the Federation of Africa University Sports (FASU), Ms Nomsa Mahlangu, welcomed all the student-athletes from the participating countries namely, Kenya, Senegal, Uganda and South Africa.

“These are opportunities that you as student-athletes need to grab with both hands as you compete for spot to represent Africa at the International 3x3 University Champs later on this year in Xiamen, China,” said Mahlangu as she reminded the student-athletes of what was at stake.

Players from the Uganda Christian University (UCU, Uganda) and the Higher Institute of Entrepreneurship and Management (ISEG, Senegal) will represent Africa in both the men’s and women’s sections at the 2019 International University Sports Federation (FISU) 3x3 University World Cup from 31October to 1November 2019, in Xiamen, China. The tournament will be hosted by Huaqiao University.

All four teams edged out their competitors to finish in positions 1 and 2 respectively. Both the men’s and women’s teams from the International University of African Diasporas (UNIDAF, Senegal) narrowly missed the opportunity to compete at the prestigious event.

Stellenbosch University (Maties) men’s team, made its debut in this year’s edition of the Championship, and put on a brave performance against the more experienced teams in 3x3 basketball from Senegal (Maties 10-16 ISEG), Kenya (Kisii University 10-14 Maties) and hosts, Kenya (Maties 05-16 United States International University-Africa).

The University of Johannesburg (UJ) hosted the inaugural championship in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2016, and was represented by a different men’s team from the one that competed in the first and second editions of the Afro-Varsity 3x3 Challenge. UJ was also put to task by the other teams from Uganda (Makerere University 13-10 UJ), Senegal (UJ 06-13 UCU) and Kenya (UJ 13-04 Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT)). UJ competed in the FISU 3x3 University Champs in Xiamen, China in 2016 after winning the tournament.

“We’re far behind the rest of the continent in terms of 3x3 basketball. The two games are completely different and our players, although played good basketball, struggled to make the transition from 5x5 basketball to 3x3 basketball where the game is more fast-paced and every ball possession counts,” said UJ basketball coach, Manda Ngema, who was led teams in three Afro-Varsity champs.

The fourth edition of the champs will go back to the United States International University-Africa (USIU, Kenya) and the President of FASU announced that the hosts for the period 2020-2023 will be revealed next year at the games.

Participation in the tournament is open all member institutions of FASU and all student-athletes should not be older than 23 years and must be registered at the same university teams in order to be eligible to compete.



Posted by Nqobile Gama on 2019-05-01.
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