CAPE TOWN, March 18 — Namibia’s athletes are gearing up to compete in five disciplines at the South African Sports Association for the Physically Disabled (SASAPD) National Championships in Cape Town. The competition, which runs from Friday to Tuesday, is a critical stepping stone for athletes aspiring to reach the Paralympic Games in Paris next year.
The Namibian team boasts a record-breaking 38 athletes at the championship, surpassing its representation at previous championships. The sports minister, Agnes Tjongarero, expects the team to achieve more success and become podium contenders, thanks to its recent successes at international competitions like the Commonwealth Games and International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Grand Prix in Morocco last year.
Leading the charge for the team are decorated Paralympians Ananias Shikongo and Johannes Nambala, along with fellow track stars Roodly Gowaseb, Lahja Ishitile, and Bradley Murere.
Beyond aiming for success at the national championships, Namibia’s powerlifting team will use the South African competition to prepare for the Africa Championships in June and Para Africa Games in September. The athletes are also looking to secure Olympic spots.
For the first time, the Namibian team will make its goalball debut at the national championships. The sport is played by athletes who are blind or visually impaired, and the goal is to throw a ball past the opponents and into their net to score points. Players stay on their hands and knees to defend their net and score against their opponents.
Finally, the para-cyclists are determined to make a lasting impact at the national championships. Last year, the hand-cyclists took on The Namibian Paratus Cycle Classic, Outeniqua Challenge, and completed the 397km Nedbank Desert Dash, arguably the world’s most challenging mountain bike race.
In conclusion, Namibia’s athletes are ready to compete in five disciplines at the SASAPD National Championships. With recent successes and a record number of athletes, Team Namibia is poised to achieve great things at the competition. Best of luck to all the athletes! – Namibia Daily News