The Madibaz outfit have set their sights on a place in the top four when the inaugural Varsity Basketball tournament begins in Johannesburg this weekend.
Taking place at the Wits University Sports Hall, the tournament will be played over two weekends – October 5 to 7 and October 12 to 14.
Madibaz Sport Basketball manager Bernard Petersen said they were relishing the prospect of testing themselves at the highest varsity level.
“All of our players have competed in the University Sport South Africa weeks and the players are well prepared for this challenge,” he said.
“Our training has been focused on doing well and we have set ourselves the goal of making at least the top four.”
He added that the experience of Elton Mothibi and captain Sikumbuzo Dlamini would be important to their fortunes.
“Elton has competed in the Basketball National League and is a very good mentor for the young players.
“Sikumbuzo knows what to expect and will ensure the teams remains motivated.”
He felt that the strength of the leagues in Gauteng would make teams such as Wits and Vaal University of Technology the strongest contenders for the title.
“They do have a rigorous basketball programme up there,” he said.
“We don’t have that sort of experience, but I believe the youngsters will put up their hands and compete.
The teams to battle it out for the Varsity Basketball trophy will be University of KwaZulu-Natal, UJ, University of Cape Town, Nelson Mandela University, Tshwane University of Technology, University of Pretoria, VUT and Wits.
The tournament will feature an innovative power play where for two minutes every point scored will count double.