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SA Women’s Softball prepare for battle in Botswana

South Africa’s senior national softball team has travelled to Botswana to play two international friendlies against the Botswana national team as well as Chunyo University (Japan). The games are scheduled totake place on 27 February to 1 March 2020.

Head Coach, Mamoloko Dipone, has selected a strong 15 women team with an accompanying technical team that have made their way to our neighbouring country. University Sport South Africa (USSA) spoke to Mokgadi Moswazi, the Team Manager of the South African national senior women softball team. She had the following to say regarding the upcoming friendly tournament:

USSA: How has the side’s preparations been going for the friendly matches? 

MM: Since players were selected to be part of the national team they’ve been working very hard at club and provincial level, which made it easy for us to prepare at national level. As we are monitoring their performance and fitness levels, I can safely say that players are well prepared for this encounter.

USSA: As softball isn’t a popular sport in the country, how does Softball SA attract attention for prospective players?

MM: We have development officers whose responsibility is to ensure that school programme’s are running and in turn supply us with young players since schools are a reliable source as that’s where softball starts. Although we also get players from communities where clubs in all provinces recruit youngsters for development to be softball players. We also have a game for kids called Softball 5 where you play softball without softball equipment just for the kids to learn the basics and for it spark their interest to play the ball game.

USSA: There are a number of players that come from the USSA set-up in the current team, how do they contribute to the team dynamics and success?

MM: They contribute a lot because SSA adopted USSA as a pool where we select our U23 players, and this helps us to then prepare them for senior level. It’s not only players who contribute to softball, but also most coaches, technical officials, Vice-President, treasurer, team managers and our current marketing officer are all from the USSA set-up. This confirms that USSA plays a huge role in softball development. We so wish we can be allowed to play at CUCSA for us to gain more experience and also be involved in the World Student Games.

USSA: Is the university environment a place that you usually scout for talent?

MM: Yes of course, USSA is one of the feeders to our national teams and plays a big role for softball in the country. Looking at the men’s world series about 10 were from USSA even the women’s side, 10 out of 13 that will be going to Botswana this weekend are from USSA. Not only for players but in different departments because they study various courses that helps us grow the sport without a hassle.

USSA: What are your hopes for this trip to Botswana and plans for the rest of the year?

MM: We hope and wish that we learn from the Japanese and come out on top and be ready to compete in international encounters. The Plan for the year is to prepare for the African qualifiers that are coming soon, for qualification for the 2021 World Championships.

Posted by Kimara Singh (U-MEDIA) on 2020-03-02.
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