Even with multiple league titles under their belts, the Nelson Mandela University Squash Club will continue to focus on being the team to beat in Port Elizabeth in 2018.
Under the guidance of coach Jason le Roux, who was named Eastern Province player of the year in October, the Madibaz men’s team have won six first-league titles and five super league crowns since 2012.
One of the key tournaments for them next year will be the University Sport South Africa week which they will host in July.
Le Roux said they were keen to make in impression at that competition, having shown steady improvement in recent years.
“We lack a degree of financial clout, but if we get some top players into our system we will have a strong team for the USSA tournament, giving us a chance.
“Our women are good but we hope we can encourage some of the Nelson Mandela students who play largely on a social basis to join the club and increase the depth.”
He added that their success in EP squash was sending out positive signals.
“There is definitely interest among locals to join us and players from other varsities have also asked me if they could come to study at Nelson Mandela University.
“We just need to work wisely with our budget to see how we can accommodate them.”
Le Roux ascribed their success to the pool of talent in Eastern Province and to the way the young players were managed.
“Each player must be managed in a way that encourages them and to get the best out of them,” he said.
“Putting goals in place and showing the players the goals are achievable, as demonstrated by our success, have helped a lot.”
Madibaz squash manager Melissa Awu paid tribute to Le Roux for his contribution to the club.
“It is wonderful to have a person like Jason in our club,” she said. “He is an asset and the men’s team have been outstanding in recent years.”
Awu said their aim was to continue trying to attract good players from around the Eastern Cape to ensure the club remained healthy.