UMLAZI BLASTERS SHINE AT DUT TOURNAMENT
By: Njabulo Ndlovu
Umlazi Blasters were crowned champions after defeating Wolves 38-32 points in the finals of the basketball tournament hosted by DUT Sport Management students.
The tournament took place on 15 August from 10am to 6pm at the Fred Crookes Sports Centre, Steve Biko Campus, with Umlazi Blasters as the last team standing at the tournament..
It was not an easy road for Umlazi Blasters as they had to win two games before reaching the finals. They beat the KM Kings by a score of 62-33 and DHS 38-21.
Their opponents in the final, the DUT Wolves demolished KM Kings by a score of 70-22 and DHS 54-43 to book themselves a spot in the finals.
Sihle Shange, captain of Wolves said that the tournament went well, and their performance was good but not good enough.
“We were good, I am impressed because we are not a team- we just came together for this tournament and we made it all the way to the finals,” said Shange.
The winning captain Nkululeko Buthelezi, was happy that they continued with their fine display and their winning culture. He believes they had a good chance of winning as they showed character throughout the tournament.
“We were satisfied with our performance. The tournament went well as there were different sponsors and this year we had the guys with Down syndrome. This tournament was good compared to the last year,” said Buthelezi.
The tournament had members of the Down Syndrome Association. They had young people who are affected by the illness playing a friendly match with the tournament organisers High Glory (Sports Management students).
Dudu Sishi, who is the Outreach Co-ordinator, said that she was happy that they took part as, she and her wards enjoyed the outing with their young adults to DUT.
“We are so proud to be here. We have enjoyed seeing the teams play and win. We are also happy as we saw our young adults with Down syndrome playing,” said Sishi.
Mandisa Miya, one of the tournament organisers said that some of the things did not go according to their plans, but they are happy with how the event turned out to be.
“Our event was a success although players were not professional as some arrived late. Our purpose for this event was getting sports to everyone else. That is why we had the Down Syndrome Association, to show it does not matter who you are and what disabilities you have, anyone can participate and be actually good in that particular sports,” said Miya.