The University of Pretoria played host to this year’s University Sports South Africa (USSA) National Institutional Judo Championships from 26-28 March. This is an event in which eight universities competed in various categories.
TuksJudo displayed their dominance as they claimed victory in seven of the nine categories presented. They competed against athletes from the University of the Witwatersrand, Stellenbosch University, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, the University of KwaZulu-Natal, the University of the Free State, the University of Johannesburg and the University of Cape Town. Pierre Wolmarans, Dale Whittaker and Ruan-Tobie Snyman won gold in the male individual division, with Michaela Whitebooi, Sinothando Mva, Desiree Blake, Maggie Louw, Tabea Lingscheid, Unelle Snyman and Claudette-Lee Sutherland also claiming victory in the female division. Whitebooi and Wolmarans came away with the best newcomer awards as Whittaker, a national championship holder, showed off his class.
The contest served as an opportunity to impress USSA national team selectors, with Wolmarans, Whittaker, Ruan-Tobie Snyman, Whitebooi, Mva, Blake, Louw, Unelle Snyman and Sutherland making the team of 15. The championship also served as an opportunity for athletes to prepare ahead of the All Africa Games, which will be hosted in the capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Brazzaville, in September.
TuksVolleyball will participate in the Varsity Beach Volleyball tournament from 22-23 April at the University of the Western Cape (UWC).
Tuks is going into the tournament with an experienced team, the majority of which competed and finished fourth at last year’s competition. Dina Kladis will be coaching the team, which consists of Vanessa Sardinha da Silva, Thumo Neluvhalani and Tuks stalwart Margrit Springer.
The team will have to contend with a number of challenges, including an unfamiliar environment at UWC and trying to compete against the wind which is a major adjustment for non-coastal teams. With the competition growing each year, teams are constantly improving. Additional teams will be competing this year, which is another challenge for Tuks. The team is hoping to do well and contend for the medals they narrowly missed in previous years.
The players from TuksNetball have been making waves recently, with 28 players being selected for provincial teams. Melissa Myburgh, Ine-Marie Venter, Lenise Potgieter, Lindie Lombard, Rochelle Rossouw, Tshina Mdau,Tshenolo Thethele, Erin Burger, Izette Lubbe, Gizelle Lemmer, Shenel Bouwer, Lungile Mthembu, Shadine van der Merwe, Zanne-Marie Pienaar, Jasmine Ziegelmeier, Renskie Steyn, Nthabi Mthutsi and Geraldine Odendaal were selected to represent the Gauteng North Jaguars while Chrisna Bootha van Zyl, Yolande du Preez, Aneret Viljoen, Cleo Kgoputso, Marelize de Bruin, Lou-Marie Geldenhuys, Rozanne Matthyse, Sarina Matthee, Amanda Mynhardt and Jancke Penning were selected to represent the Gauteng Golden Fireballs at the Brutal Fruit Netball Premier League.
The league will be hosted by Tuks from 8 May to 7 June. The league is South Africa’s flagship netball tournament.