Rabat — Namibia's women's beach volleyball team finished sixth out of 19 countries that competed in the event at the African Games (AG) currently underway in Rabat, Morocco.
The AG, which is celebrating its 54th anniversary this year, is currently underway in Casablanca and Rabat. Team Namibia is competing in 11 out of the 29 sport codes at the championships.
Kim Seebach and Kristin Schulz, the two athletes who represented Namibia in the beach volleyball event under the tutelage of James Verrinder, recorded a sixth-placed finish after they defeated Sudan 2-0 in addition to collecting points from Sierra Leone, who forfeited their group match.
Namibia finished as runners-up in Group A, behind host Morocco, whom they lost to in their group match.
After progressing to the quarter-finals of the competition, Namibia met Mauritius' pair of Liza Bonne and Orian Maita Cousin, who defeated them 1-2 in a tightly contested match. With the defeat, the Namibians were relegated to the top eight play-offs where they met Rwanda.
The match against Rwanda saw a more composed Seebach and Schulz, who progressed past their opponents with a 2-0 win to book a rematch with hosts Morocco, who were also defeated by Mozambique in the quarter-finals before winning against Nigeria to book a rematch with Namibia.
The Namibians once more found the going tough just like in the group stages, while Morocco played to their strengths and relied on their cheering supporters to spur them on to another 2-0 defeat of Namibia to record a fifth-place finish, relegating Namibia to sixth place.
Speaking to Nampa after the match, Freddy Mwiya, Chief Administrator at the Namibia Sports Commission, said he was happy with the team's performance at the African Games.
"Finishing sixth is a really good position for this young team. I am happy with the way we performed. It shows that despite limited resources for this team to prepare, they still worked hard for their country," he said.
He added that the sixth place finish puts Namibia in an advantageous position to qualify for the 2020 Olympic Games.
"Next year, there will be play-offs for the 2020 Olympics and our team put themselves in that group of the top eight African nations that will go for the play-offs, which is a really good thing," Mwiya said.