The Northern Cape under-19 Kay Motsepe Schools Cup Provincial Finals take place at the Robert Gunda Stadium in Upington on Saturday, 29 August. There will be five regional winners competing for the R100 000 first prize and a chance to play in the national finals.
Representing the Francis Baard District will be Kimberley’s Tetlanyo High School, who are in the provincial playoffs for the first time since they began playing in the tournament in 2011.
Phineas Seema, the team coach, is thrilled that they have progressed further than ever before and he attributes this to hard work. “All my players will be leaving school this year and they have been telling me since we started the qualifiers in March that they want to be the team to win R100 000 for the school,” he said.
Seema started working with these boys in 2011 and has taken them from under-14 through to under-19 level. ''I have seen the team grow consistently every year,” he said. “They communicate well on and off the field and their skills and confidence have greatly improved.”
The Kay Motsepe Schools Cup, sponsored by the Motsepe Foundation and Sanlam, has added a new dimension to school football said Seema. “The tournament helps build players confidence, gives them something to strive for and teaches them to work hard and always do your best. Every school that registers wants to win and the level of football is extremely high and we learn a lot every year which helps build skills levels.”
Seema is particularly happy with the way the players have approached the tournament. “When we started playing in the cluster games, we drafted a plan of action, and every time we reach a certain level we would go back and tick it off on our plan,” he said.
The journey has not been easysaid Seema. “We played against some very competitive schools, Rietvale, from Ricthie, was the toughest opponents whom we faced in the regional finals. They always have a good team and have won the provincials in the past. We managed to beat them on penalties to get into the provincial finals.”
The team is determined to do well at the provincials. “We are not concerned as to which schools we will be facing and how experienced they are as it is all about what happens on the day. I tell the boys that when they get on the field it’s 11 players vs 11 players, past credentials don’t matter when its game time.”
The teams participating in the Northern Cape provincial finals are:
· Tetlanyo High School – Francis Baard District
· Okiep High School-Namaqua District
· Remmogo High School- John Taolo Gaetsewe District
· Weslaan Hoerskool-Pixley Ka Seme District
· Groblershoop High School-ZF Mgcawu District