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Big selection calls as SA gears up for World Aquatics Championships

By Avuyile Sawula , in Water Sports | Featured Water Sports | News , at 2024-04-25 Tags: , , , , , , ,

Central Gauteng's Karabo Mamaregane going for goal against KZN keeper, Ross Strauss during the Junior Water Polo Championships in East London. Both players have been included in the SA u18 side. Photo: Shot by Shani Photography
Central Gauteng’s Karabo Mamaregane going for goal against KZN keeper Ross Strauss during the Junior Water Polo Championships in East London. Both players have been included in the SA u18 side. Photo: Shot by Shani Photography

Only four Central Gauteng boys’ team players, who claimed gold at this year’s Junior Water Polo Championships, have been included in the South African side set to participate in the World Aquatics Men’s u18 Water Polo Championships in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

The tournament kicks off on 2 July, with the final taking place a week later, on Tuesday, 9 July.

Leading up to the World Aquatics’ event, Swimming South Africa hosted the Junior Water Polo Championships, the Currie Cup, in East London, in March.

The four-day tournament provided the national selectors with an opportunity to see the country’s best juniors in action against one another before they announced the SA team.

There, Gauteng won the competition by beating KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) 8-6 in the final.

Their journey to the title deciding contest was categorised by grit, determination, and playing an attractive brand of water polo, which propelled them to victory against the top sides after some early setbacks.

Led by coach Jon-Marc de Carvalho, Gauteng had to go the long route after suffering two defeats in the round-robin stages, against Western Province (4-5), and KZN (8-12) respectively.

When it mattered most, however, they produced their best performances, with their 10-5 victory over Western Province in the semifinals arguably their best of the lot.

From there, it was on to another rematch, this time against KZN, where the Gauteng side got the better of coach Rob Ambler‘s team, snatching an 8-6 win in which Karabo Mamaregane scored a hattrick.

Mamaregane, from King Edward VII, was named in the 15-player squad along with the St John’s College duo of Gregory Pryce, and Ross Rovelli, and Ross Stuart, of St David’s Marist Inanda.

Despite an unexpectedly poor showing at the tournament, where they finished third, Western Province had seven players selected.

Attention was clearly paid to how they performed during in-season tournaments, with Province having three teams in the top four at every major event.

Western Province is represented by Bishops Diocesan College‘s Jordan De Sousa and Thomas Truter. Paul Roos provides three players, Adam October, Arkin Marais and Salahuddin Khan, and the SACS duo of Nicholas Fall and Zack Cicero was also selected.

During their tour to Argentina, the side will be led by KZN head coach, Rob Ambler, who plies his trade at Glenwood High School. He will be joined by four players who played for him during the Junior Champs in East London.

Two are from Clifton College, Ross Strauss and Oliver Ditz, while Westville Boys’ High‘s Rhees Hall and Northwood’s Matthew Lortan also cracked the nod.

Ambler will be assisted by Siyabonga Guzana, while the manager of the team is Meryke Terblanche.

SA U18 TEAM

Jordan De Sousa (Western Province, Bishops), Adam October (Western Province, Paul Roos), Nicholas Fall (Western Province, SACS), Zack Cicero (Western Province, SACS), Thomas Truter (Western Province, Bishops), Arkin Marais (Western Province, Paul Roos), Salahuddin Khan (Western Province, Paul Roos) Gregory Pryce (Central Gauteng, St John’s College), Ross Rovelli (Central Gauteng, St John’s College), Ross Stuart (Central Gauteng, St David’s Marist Inanda), Karabo Mamaregane (Central Gauteng, King Edward VII), Rhees Hall (KZN, Westville Boys’ High), Ross Strauss (KZN, Clifton College), Matthew Lortan (KZN, Northwood School), Oliver Ditz (KZN, Clifton College)

Non-travelling reserves

Judah Dos Santos (Central Gauteng, King Edward VII), Zico Williams (Central Gauteng, Reddam House Helderfontein), Marc Smith (Central Gauteng, St Stithians College), Max Scully (KZN, Westville Boys’ High), Conor Melling-Willams (Western Province, SACS).

Management

Head Coach: Rob Ambler (KZN)
Assistant Coach: Siyabonga Guzana (KZN)
Manager: Meryke Terblanche (KZN)

error: Sorry ol' chap, those shenanigans are not permissible.