All systems are on the go for the Namibian women national indoor hockey team with Coach Erwin Handura indicating that the girls have been grilled and are almost ready to enter the world cup to be held next month in Berlin, Germany.
The games will roar to life from the 7th to the 11th of February and already the team has had a tournament in Cape Town this last December where it played and won nine games in three days against males.
Speaking to The Villager, Handura said he would be making a solo flight to the Czech Republic this coming week for the European Indoor Championships to get some tips as part of preparing the girls.
‘’Yes it will be only me going and I will be recording the games so I can come and show the girls so we can analyse how they are playing,’’ said Handura at the side lines of this week’s training at the DTTS when The Villager Sport Visited the team.
After a gruelling series of trials soon after winning the world cup qualifier, Handura has made his final-12 selection.
This comprises Magy Mengo (captain), Marcia Venter, Petro Stofberg, Ina Tjimbinaje Louis, Jocelle Deysel, Gillian Hermanus, Berencia Unotjari Diamond, Sunell Ludwig, Zani Van Lill, Dure Bosshof, Jeani Holz and Kiana Cormack.
Yet Handura’s team will be facing a massive tide given the pool (B) from which they will be battling it out at the prestigious games which is made up of the hosting team Germany, the Czech Republic, Australia, Ukraine and Russia.
The Germans are internationally ranked the 2nd, the Czechs standing as world’s 3rd, Australia 8th, Ukraine 7th, and Russia 17th while the Namibians are ranked world’s number 14.
The Czechs and the Germans, proud hosts of the European Indoors Champs and the highly anticipated world cup respectively will lock horns with Namibia on the 7th of February.
On the 8th, Namibia will take on Australia and Ukraine with the following day bringing their might against the Russians.
All the teams in pool B will be battling it out in the European Indoor Champs next week save for Australia and Namibia which are from different continents, Handura confirmed.
The spirits in the Namibian camp where however high this week when The Villager checked in at their training session.
‘’We are just now putting all the pieces together, the fitness in the team is very good, I do not have a problem. We still have a fitness test this coming Saturday, another one next Saturday. Every Saturdays we do fitness tests and during the week we try to improve their fitness. So fitness-wise we are fit enough to compete even against any team anytime now. We are still improving the sharpness of the players,’’ said Handura.
The team currently has about four games lined up this whole week against men’s teams.
‘’We cannot play against women because they are the best women in the country so there are no women that are better than them,’’ he said.