Thursday, April 30, 2015
Previous Danone Nations Cup champions take a step closer to repeating their past success
Daniye Primary School of Bushbuckridge go into the Mpumalanga provincial finals of the under-12 Danone Nations Cup competition determined to relive the glories of 2013 when they won the national title and represented the country at the Danone Nations Cup World Finals in London.
They will be taking on the province’s other regional winners at the Themba Senamela Stadium in Middelburg on 9th May, and they have a new coach - Mr Gideon Theko – at the helm.
The school was eliminated before the provincial level last year and Theko, who joined the school as a teacher this year, said he has been following their soccer journey for a long time now and is glad that he has been the one to lead them into the provincial playoffs.
“I am passionate about soccer; I used to play soccer while growing up wishing that I could make a career out of it but unfortunately I didn’t reach the professional level so I opted for coaching,” he said. “That was in 1996, so I have 19 years of experience. I have no formal training in coaching and I use my experience that I gained from when I was a soccer player to coach the boys.”
From the first game this year Theko said he could tell that the boys really want to win the tournament this time. “They have been strong, determined and consistent from the beginning and I hope that they keep the momentum going forward. The team has been disciplined, they listen to my instructions and advice all the time, coaching them has been easy for me.”
The team is a completely new one and Theko said while it’s hard not to feel the pressure of wanting to repeat what the 2013 team did, there is the advantage of having the other teams feeling threatened by them.
The 2013 victory has had a positive effect on the school, Theko believes. The number of soccer players at the school has increased dramatically and the parents are more involved now.
“They want their kids to be part of the u12 team because they have seen the benefits,” he said. “There are currently 25 under-12 players who want to make the team. They know that not anyone gets to make the team they have to prove that they are worthy of being a part it.
“We are fortunate to have a great team of players who have natural talent and are thirsty for exposure. We will be selecting the starting line up on the basics: trapping and passing skills as well as the ability to shoot on target.”
Bohlabela Regional Results
Lehukwe 0 vs Daniye 3
Dwarsloop 1 vs Ximhungwe 0
Mashishing 0 (5) vs. Samson 0 (4)
Thulamahashe 0 (4) vs Marite 0 (5)
Daniye 3 vs Madile 0
Dwarsloop 1 v Mashishing 2
Daniye 2 vs Marite 0
Final - Daniye 1 vs Mashishing 0
The teams participating in the Mpumalanga provincial finals are:
Maminza Primary School-Ehlanzeni District
Daniye Primary School-Bohlabela District
Dumelani Primary School-Nkangala District
TBC-Gert Sibande District
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One of the core values of the Danone Nations Cup tournament is to encourage young people to believe in their dreams. Through this initiative Danone offers a sporting event that reaches out to and inspires millions of children all over the world