SA ready to spike foes

Meshack Motloung

Meshack Motloung

The African Nations Cup volleyball tournament will be held at the University of KwaZulu-Natal's Westville campus sports centre in Durban from September 15-22.

For the first time this tournament will be used as a qualifier for the world championship in Tokyo, Japan next year.

Champions from their respective zones will take part in the tournament in Durban.

South Africa, the Zone 6 champions, are determined to be the first team to represent the continent in this world showpiece.

But they will be faced with stiff challenges from Cameroon, Tunisia and Egypt who are the strongest countries in this event.

Most of their players are playing overseas, which is why they are dominating the sport on the continent.

Volleyball SA director Donovan Nair said he was expecting one of the most exciting tournaments in the country.

"Every country is determined to represent the continent in Tokyo next year. We're bracing ourselves for an exciting tournament starting this weekend," said Nair.

Cameroon and Tunisia have been dominating in the past but Egypt are the defending champions after having won this tournament last year.

South Africa have good and talented players in their ensemble.

But they were hit by a huge setback when their captain Andile Masinda, the country's main attacker, was forced to withdraw from the tournament after picking up a knee injury.

"It's a huge blow for the home side, but they will have to soldier on," said Nair.

Other exciting South African players are Freedom Chiya and Gershan Rorich, who is the side's playmaker.

The other countries that will be taking part are Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Rwanda, Burundi, Liberia, Morocco, Sudan and Algeria.