The second annual Jeppe Under-14 Basketball Festival takes place this weekend. The first games are at 12 noon on Friday and the event ends with a prize giving ceremony at 12 noon on Sunday.
We have decided to make this year’s competition a festival, not a tournament. Director of Sport at the school, Mr Brendan Gittins explained that it’s important for the boys at this age to spend more time on the court and get the opportunity to learn the game through experience, not only by watching other teams play.
“Every team will play every other one, with no league points awarded,” Gittens explained. “There won’t be playoff games and there won’t be trophy at the end of it. That means 10 matches for every side over the one full day and two half days. We were concerned that when pool positions and semi-final places were at stake last year, some teams fielded their strongest teams and some boys didn’t get much game time. We hope that won’t happen now.”
The last games on Sunday will be organised on a strength vs strength basis, culminating in the “main game”, a matchup between the two teams who in the opinion of the coaches were the best on view over the weekend.
It will be followed by a prize giving at which a tournament “dream team” will be announced, and prizes given to the best players in certain positions.
“In line with the festival approach, there will not be extra time in the case of draws, and games may be cut short if necessary due to weather disruptions,” Gittens explained.
The participating schools are: Jeppe, KES, Parktown, St Stithians, St John’s, St David’s, St Benedict’s, Bishop Bavin, Pretoria Boys’ High, St Alban’s, Invitation team.