The third International Tournament and second Open Arab Championships of Wheelchair Basketball took place between the 10th to the 16th July in Agadir, Morocco.
Six countries (Algeria, Morocco, Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and South Africa) competed against each other in the six day event. In a tight competition it was Algeria who came out on top winning both the title of the third International Tournament of Wheelchair Basketball and the second Open Arab Championships by beating Morocco 71 – 36. In the bronze medal game South Africa fought off tough competition from Iraq to win the bronze medal, 68 -56.
Alongside the tournament there were also a number of training clinics taking place for classifiers, referees and coaches which saw 26 people in attendance. Furthermore it was important to note Ms Natasha Onono from South Africa, was awarded as a new International referee, and two officials from Morocco Mr Faical Saoud and Mr Youssef Zaga achieved their Zone Referee Accreditation, as well as Ms Meryem Ait Said who became the first national female referee in Morocco.
As well as both the competition and the clinics, the Executive Meeting of the IWBF Africa Zone was held on the 15th and 16th July 2016 at the Anezi hotel in Agadir city, which included discussions on a qualification tournament for the Men’s U23 World Championships, African Championship of Club Champions, a competition schedule and training calendar for 2017 – 2018.
President of the IWBF Africa Zone, Hamid El Aouni, said “It was an excellent week of wheelchair basketball to help showcase and progress the sport in Africa.
“Moreover, the closing ceremony was honoured by the attendance of Mr Ulf Mehrens the president of IWBF, whom IWBF Africa feels delighted to work with in order the develop wheelchair basketball, specifically in African continent.
“The closing ceremony was also animated by very spectacular show of Morocco Para-Teakwando Demonstration Team, who showed that nothing could be a stumbling block on the path of the disabled person, and that each disabled person can develop himself or herself through practicing sport.”