Monday, April 29, 2013


The search for the U-12 School soccer team that will represent South Africa in the Danone Nations Cup World Finals in London, England in September continues on Saturday, 4 May, when North West hosts their provincial finals at the Matlosana Stadium in Klerksdorp.  The games begin at 9am with the final at 2pm.

The winner on Saturday will then travel to Johannesburg in June to compete in the National Finals. The regional winners that will play in the provincial finals are: Agisanang Public School (Dr Kenneth Kaunda Region); Tlaseng Primary School (Bojanala Region); DP Kgotleng Primary School (Ngaka Modiri Molema Region) and Educar Primary School (Dr Segomotsi Mompati Region).

This will be the second time Tlaseng Primary School, situated in Tlaseng village, about 30km from Rustenburg, will be playing in the provincial finals. Coach Arthur Rapoo said the team won all their games at cluster and regional level and are training hard for Saturday:  “We train for an hour and half each day, but my challenge is that some youngsters have to leave early to catch a bus home and four of my players are with the Platinum Stars football Academy, and they have to be at their training session at 3pm each day.”

Rapoo singles out defender Thato Mpete, team captain and midfielder Siyabonga Sibanyoni, and striker Thabiso Mokgothu as their key players. “Siyabonga was part of last year’s squad and his knowledge and experience has helped the team a lot.”

Agisanang Public School has a good squad of players this year and stand a good chance of getting to the national finals.  The school has competed in the Danone Nations Cup for five years and this will be their first time in the provincial finals. Team manager Tshepo Mogapi said they are following the same training schedule they used when competing in the cluster and regional levels.  “It’s our first provincial final experience so I don’t know what to expect,” said Mogapi. “So I did not want to change the routine and tactics as this might confuse the players.”

The team will be looking to midfielders Katlego Boareng and Kgothatso Mogami to perform for them, Mogapi says. “They are the fastest boys in my team and I need them to win the ball and run with it, and to supply the strikers.”

Both teams admit that the possibility of a trip to London makes a big difference in the determination of the players who want to experience the fun and camaraderie of playing against different countries, which is what the Danone Nations Cup is all about.


Each month a special individual within the KFC Mini-Cricket programme is awarded with the KFC Mini-Cricket Coach of the Month Award. Nomathembisa Cukwana, a teacher at Qhiphu Senior Primary School in Tabankulu, is March’s winner after being recognised as an exemplary mentor to the young cricketers in the Kei cricket region.

Originally very involved in coaching netball, Nomathembisa was introduced to the game of cricket by Kenneth Sixhwaru, a friend of hers who noticed her unique leadership potential early on. “He saw how popular I was with the netball girls and thought that I could bring the same kind of motivation and inspiration into cricket to help kids get active.”, said Nomathembisa when asked how she was introduced into the KFC Mini-Cricket programme.

Nomanthembisa is one of over 7 000 volunteer coaches who are finding new and interesting ways to get kids involved in cricket, providing that vital first step in Cricket South Africa’s pipeline to the Proteas. This vital role is of course not without its challenges. Challenges that Nomanthembisa is mindful of and addresses accordingly; “Kids are usually very energetic and tend to lose attention fast. Role playing is one of the biggest elements I use in order to make sure that I get kids active in cricket. We sometimes create games where the kids get to play as their favourite cricketing heroes before training, or even a match.”, says Nomanthembisa who sees the merits in  dealing with the kids on a personal level.

Prior to getting involved in the KFC Mini-Cricket programme, Nomanthembisa had never played any form of cricket. Her love of sport and inquisitiveness however, led her to join the Khaya Majola Kei Cricket Workshops, where she got to learn the ins and outs of the game.

From this sound foundation, Nomanthembisa also believes that much can be learned from watching the game’s big names live on the field. Her Proteas heroes are AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla, two players whose techniques and abilities she monitors closely in order to provide more to her KFC Mini-Cricketers.

With 16 Provincial KFC Mini-Cricket festivals held annually throughout South Africa along with countless other smaller festivals, over 100 000 boys and girls from over 4 500 schools are benefitting from the efforts of passionate individuals like Nomanthembisa.

Though she is just one person in this programme, her passion and drive to include others has seen her acquire two assistants at Qhiphhu Senior Primary School who are following in her footsteps. “I have proven to them that if you are willing to try hard and work at something that you are passionate in, you can make a difference.”, says Nomanthembisa reflecting on her efforts that led to this unique award which she considers the highlight of her coaching career thus far.

Together with the title of KFC Mini-Cricket Coach of the Month, Nomanthembisa also receives a trophy, a cap and KFC vouchers worth R1 000. A well deserved prize for someone who like KFC, believes that through Mini-Cricket, many children are able to live active lifestyles. Lifestyles that are helping kids fulfill their natural potentials and enjoy a better tomorrow. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


The Gauteng leg of the under-12 Danone Nations Cup is under way and last year’s provincial champions Sonqoba Primary School - from Katlehong on the East Rand – have won their three cluster level matches and will represent the Katlehong cluster at the regional finals on Thursday, 25th April at Thokoza Stadium.

Sonqoba won the Gauteng provincial title last year, which saw them go through to the national tournament, where they lost in the final to Pietermaritzburg’s Sinamuva Primary School.

Team coach, Abel Lebotho, is confident that they will successfully defend their title. “If we work hard, show determination and play as a team, we can make it,” he said.

Lebotho has no formal coaching qualifications, but he has a wealth of experience and has been coaching at the school since 1991. He has produced a number of players who have gone on to play professional football; among them are Siyabonga Sangweni (Orlando Pirates), Bongani Mbhele (Amazulu) and Siphiwe Mkonza (Black Leopards).

Lebotho says the season is going well so far. “Things are looking good. We are training every day after school for about two hours. I think mentally we are ready but physically there are a few areas that still need polishing,” he said.

Sonqoba won all three cluster level games they played to date: 3-1 against Xhathula Primary school, 2 - 0 against Zonke Primary School and 3-1 against Matshediso Primary School.

None of the games were easy, Lebotho says. “We were up against good teams, the hardest was against Xhathula as they were good in defence and showed much composure. My midfielders need to practise taking free kicks and crosses more. We got a lot of those in the three games so far, but couldn’t convert them into goals.”

It’s too early to single out key players, Lebotho says. “All my players are new, I am still assessing them. Making the national finals again would be a dream come true. We came so close to fulfilling our dream of representing the country at the Danone Nations Cup World Finals last year,” he said. “It’s one step at a time now, and becoming Gauteng champions would bring us one step closer.”

For group Danone, the Nations Cup tournament is all about giving young players the opportunity 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.


Sunday, April 21, 2013


Reney Botha, from Bongolethu Primary school, is the February KFC Mini-Cricket Coach of the month winner. An educator at the school located in Oudtshoorn, she is a fine example of how the KFC Mini-Cricket programme is making a difference in all communities around the country, whereby dedicated volunteers like herself do outstanding work in getting kids active while developing a love for cricket.
Reney is one of over 7 000 volunteer coaches providing that vital first step in Cricket South Africa’s pipeline to the Proteas. With 16 Provincial KFC Mini-Cricket festivals held annually throughout South Africa along with countless other smaller festivals, over 100 000 boys and girls from over 4 500 schools are benefitting from the efforts of people like Reney.
Back in 2006, Reney accompanied the Bongolethu Primary school to a Mini-Cricket festival in Oudtshoorn, and from that day has been fully involved in the programme. Since then she has taken great pride in her role in the programme; “My role is to build a solid foundation and create a realistic change to all kids with a brighter future in cricket circles”, says Reney.
The focus of getting more and more kids involved and active is something that Reney, and indeed the KFC Mini-Cricket programme, have in common. The programme includes primary school boys between the ages of four and ten as well as primary school girls between the ages of four and thirteen. Differently-abled kids are also included, just with a larger focus being placed on hand-eye coordination, ball catching skills and basics of the game.
“It is important for me as a coach at my school to see that all the children involved get an equal opportunity to participate in the KFC Mini-Cricket Programme”, says Reney further echoing one of the great fundamentals of the programme.
Reney feels that the KFC Mini-Cricket Programme is currently the best sporting code at her school, little wonder then that players benefitting from it during the time of her involvement have gone on to be selected for zonal, regional as well as provincial age group teams.
In recognition for the hard work and success Reney has enjoyed, together with the title of KFC Mini-Cricket Coach of the Month she also receives a trophy, a cap and a KFC gift voucher worth R1 000. A well deserved prize for someone that shares the mindset of KFC, that through KFC Mini-Cricket many children are able to live active lifestyles. Lifestyles where cricket and camaraderie shape the way towards a brighter future.


Friday, April 19, 2013


When you think of Hashim Amla, you naturally think of the spearhead of the Proteas batting line-up. A man who humbled the English with his blistering stroke play, a man who frequently heads up the ICC batting world rankings, and a man who is adored in cricketing circles local and abroad.

Growing up though, young Hashim was no different to the over 100 000 kids currently involved in the KFC Mini-Cricket programme, cutting their cricketing teeth at the KFC Mini-Cricket level so to speak. It is only fitting then, that he should return to it again in hosting a KFC Mini-Cricket Coaching Session at Ankervas Primary School, in Uitenhague on Thursday. 

KFC ran a competition last year on SuperSport during the IPL whereby entrants could win one of six exclusive coaching sessions with a member of the Proteas team. Gert Swartz, a teacher at Ankervas Primary, was one of the lucky winners and immediately nominated the kids he coaches to receive the prize with Hashim Amla.

“These children are from disadvantaged backgrounds and most of them are orphans who are now being raised by relatives who don’t always make the best role models. I chose the school because I believe the visit will restore hope in these kids as well as a love for the sport altogether”, said Gert on the reasons behind his prize nomination.

While studying Human Movements Science at the University of North West, Gert was tasked to choose four sports to coach. One of them was cricket, and more specifically cricket coaching for kids from the ages of 7 to 9 years.

When asked about the boys’ reaction to the news, Gert had this to say; “Everyone at the school could not believe that we could pull off something this major. The kids were even training so that they could be fit and ready to be on the same field with this international sporting hero.”

A select group of youngsters from Ankervas got to participate in a 50 minute session made up of four cricket stations, with Hashim coaching from one of them. After that the Proteas batsman shared a few inspirational words with the kids, who each got to spend some time with the star player.

“It feels like so long ago since I was in the mini-cricket programme, but being here today quickly made me remember growing up and the fun I used to have learning the game. It’s so great that KFC Mini-Cricket offers the kids this experience, and it’s really great to see so many of them getting active with it around the country each year,” said Hashim after his experience with the kids of Ankervas Primary School.

This latest KFC Coaching Session is yet another fine example of how getting kids active and kids doing what they love leads to memorable experiences. By bringing kids closer to the game, and indeed their cricketing heroes, KFC Mini-Cricket is committed to creating an active lifestyle for the youth, and one that will no doubt enrich all those that are involved.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


Monamodi Primary School from Majwemasweu Township in Brandfort is the 2013 Free State champions in the Danone Nations Cup. They beat Luckhoff Combined School 3-0 in the final, played at the Clive Solomon Stadium in Bloemfontein last weekend, to become the third team to qualify for the national finals of the competition which take place in Johannesburg in July.

The winners of the Danone Nations Cup National Finals will fulfil their dreams by representing South Africa at the Danone Nations Cup World Finals in London later this year where they will perform in front of Danone Nations Cup ambassador and former France captain, Zinedane Zidane.

Monamodi coach, Vuyo Nomatye, was delighted at the result. “This was totally unexpected as this is only our second year in the tournament and our first time at the provincial finals,” he said.  “The boys are excited and everyone at the school is proud of us, because they know how difficult things were at the regional level. Winning the Danone Nations Cup Free State Provincial Finals now means we have to work extra hard as we are only one step closer to the bigger and better title.”

Nomatye puts their success down to determination and hard work. “It took a while for the boys to understand the style of play I was introducing and to work together as a team,” he explains. “Our first four cluster games were difficult, and although we won those games, we were not at our best. I then added an extra 30 minutes to the training sessions and that was when things got better and we managed to win the regional title. We didn’t know what to expect at the provincial finals, so I said to my boys; let’s go there and use the platform as a learning curve, I didn’t think we were going to do so well, let alone win the provincial championship.” Nomatye said that none of his players had every ventured outside the village and the trip to Johannesburg to play in the National Finals will be a learning experience.

Monamodi Primary School now join Rietrivier Primary School from Northern Cape and Siphumele Primary from KwaZulu-Natal in the National Finals. They are waiting for the other six provincial champions to be identified and the first of those will be known on Saturday April 20 when the Limpopo Provincial Finals take place.


Tlong-Kganeng Public School      1 - 0        Selogilwe Primary School

Luckhoff Combined School          0 – 0       Matswathaka Primary School (Matswathaka won 3-2 on penalties)

Monamodi Primary School           1 – 0       Emang Primary School

Tlong-Kganyeng Public School    0 – 1       Luckhoff Combined School

Selogilwe Primary School              0 – 0       Matswathaka Primary School (Matswathaka won 7-6 on penalties)

Monamodi Primary School           1 – 0       Tlong-Kganyeng Public School

Emang Primary School                   0 – 1       Luckhoff Combined School

Selogilwe Primary School              0 – 0       Monamodi Primary School (Monamodi won 4-1 on penalties)

Matswathaka Primary School     2 – 2       Tlong-Kganyeng Public School (Matswathaka won 3-1 on penalties)

Emang Primary School                   1 – 0       Selogilwe Primary School

Luckhoff Combined School          1 – 0       Monamodi Primary School

Emang Primary School                   0 – 0       Matswathaka Primary School (Emang won 5-4 on penalties)

Selogilwe Primary School              1 – 0       Luckhoff Combined School

Tlongkganyeng Public School      0 – 1       Emang Primary School

Matswathaka Primary School     1 - 2        Monamodi Primary School



  1. Luckhoff Primary School
  2. Monamodi Primary School
  3. Emang Primary School
  4. Selogilwe Primary School
  5. Matswathaka Primary School
  6. Tlong-Kganyeng Public School



Monamodi Primary School 3 Luckhoff Combined School 0.




About Danone

Danone Southern Africa is part of the Danone Group, one of the fastest-growing food companies in the world. Danone is present in over 120 countries across all continents. With 160 plants and around 100,000 employees, the Danone Group is the number one worldwide for Fresh Dairy Products. Danone’s mission is to bring health through food to as many people as possible.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013


On Saturday six Free State regional winners will be taking out step further on the road to fulfilling their dreams of going to London in September to participate in the Danone Nations Cup World Finals. The Free State provincial final will take place at the Clive Solomon Stadium in Bloemfontein on Saturday April 13.  The winner will go on to represent the province in the National Finals with the ultimate winner packing for London.


One of the schools participating on Saturday is Tlong - Kganyeng Primary School. This is the fourth year they are playing in the competition finishing second at the provincial finals in both 2011 and 2012 and are hoping to go one better this year. According to Ramoshodi Ishmael Maleka, their team manager, the boys are in good shape and have been training twice a day during the Easter holidays.


He singles out his captain and striker, Lebogang Litabe, and midfielder Teboho Mokgotsi as key players in the team. “We have been grooming them from the age of seven and they are both very dedicated.”  


Maleka believes the trip to London will give the kids an experience that will change their lives.  He has heard that kids from Schools that have been overseas come home with more confidence and drive which reflects in their school work as well.  “If we are the school to go to London we plan on taking the team to the Harmony Sports Academy in Virginia so that they can learn more about the sport and what is needed from a good soccer player,” he said.


Although no players from the school have gone on to play for Bafana-Bafana yet, one of them - Itumeleng Duiker, now plays for Bloemfontein Celtic.


Maleka identifies the interaction with other children and exchanging soccer tips with players that they meet from the different schools as making the tournament very valuable. “Every trip we go on is a memory to be treasured for these young lads and we are looking forward to the provincial finals,” he said.


Luckhoff Combined School will also be in action on Saturday.  They have been participating in the tournament for three years and this is their first time at the provincial finals. The trip to Bloemfontein will be the first time many of the players will be leaving their village and there has been much excitement since the announcement was made.


The 2013 team is a completely new one. “We are confident,” team manager, Frans Deelman, said. He believes their two committed strikers, Devon Appies and Masoes Deviano are players to watch out for. “They are young but already very confident and comfortable on the ball and could well put us in the final, but we know that it will not be easy on Saturday.”



The teams participating in the Free State provincial finals are:

Monamodi Primary School – Lejweleputswa Region

Selogile Primary School – Fezile Dabi Region

Luckhoff Combined School – Xhariep Region

Matswathaka Primary School - Thabo Mofutsanyana Region

Emang Primary School – Motheo Region

Tlong - Kganyeng Primary School – Masilonyana Region


Two provinces have already hosted their finals:  Northern Cape (Rietrivier Primary School) and KZN (Siphumele Primary School) are already preparing for the National Finals.   The next provincial finals will be in Limpopo on April 20. The Danone Nations Cup National Finals will be in Johannesburg on July 22.



The SASFA Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup gives young footballers between the ages of 15 and 19 the opportunity to showcase their talent and stand the chance of being spotted by professional soccer scouts. For the top performers this is indeed an opportunity to realise their dreams of playing professional football and it starts when they are recruited into the academies of PSL clubs.

Mamelodi Sundowns released the names of three players who were identified at the Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup last year and who have now been taken into the club’s development academy. The players are: Themba Madonsela and Simamkele Radebe, both 18 year-old midfielders from Soshanguve and Abram Ncqobo, a 17 year-old goalkeeper from Hamaanskraal.

Themba Madonsela was born and raised in Soshanguve. His mother, a single parent, died when he was 15 and his grandmother then took care of him and his siblings.  She died last year and Themba, as the oldest, had to take care of his two brothers.

Themba was playing for Sinthibele High School in the Tshwane regional finals of the 2012 Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup against Clapham High School when Mamelodi Sundowns first spotted him. The school managed to beat Clapham to reach the provincial finals when Sam Mbatha, Rhulani Mokoena and Malombo Lechaba, from the Mamelodi Sundowns Development Academy, gave him the opportunity to undergo trials at the club.“I didn’t even know that they were present let alone watching me,” he said. “I was called to my principal’s office and he told me that I was invited by Mamelodi Sundowns Youth Academy for trials.

“I went for trials on in September and was told the same day that I had passed and that arrangements will be made for me to move to the Mamelodi Sundowns Academy and start 2013 at a new school. Words can’t describe how excited I was. But I had to think of my brothers before accepting the offer. Do I put my life on hold till they are old enough or do I pursue my dream? I didn’t want the opportunity to pass me by like the other opportunities before.” 

When he was 12 years old Orlando Pirates invited him to join their academy but his mother refused, saying he was too young.  Then Golden Arrows invited him for trials at 15.  “That time my mother did agree, but I couldn’t go due to my school commitments. It was decided that I would go to Durban after my examinations, but two days before I was due to leave my mom passed away, so I didn’t go,” he said. “The Sundowns offer was a dream come true and an opportunity I could not pass over so I asked my uncle and his wife to help me out and they agreed to look after my brothers leaving me to focus on is my studies and soccer.”

Themba is adapting well at his new school. “The first month was difficult because I was still trying to get used to my classmates and new teachers but I am slowly settling in now,” he said.

“I just have to work hard and stay motivated. I am currently in grade 12 and would like to study law next year. It is not going to be easy but I know I can make it, if not for me then for my siblings.”

Sam Mbatha, added, “Sadly in South Africa Themba’s situation is not uncommon. The Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup gives a window of opportunity to boys like Themba to work hard to rise above this and achieve a better life for themselves and their families. This is only the start of his journey and he will have to work very hard but we are confident that he can achieve his dreams.”

Frank Louw, Sanlam Sponsorship Manager said:  “Themba’s story is what Sanlam stands for.  We understand the value of development and the importance of realising the hopes of young people. The Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup creates opportunities that have a positive impact on the youth and also provides exposure for talented young players.”

Thursday, April 4, 2013


Rosina Sedibane Modiba Sports School’s U19 team will be in action again this year vying for the R1 million first prize on offer in the richest high school soccer tournament in Africa, the Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup.  

Rosina finished in third place in 2012 winning R500 000 for the school that will be used to upgrade the soccer fields, lay down an irrigation system, purchase new nets and soccer poles, soccer equipment, a photo copy machine, cameras, televisions and DSTV.  “This year we would like to bring home the R1 million first prize as there is a lot more we need for the school,” said coach Reginald Petersen.
Petersen says his team started training early this year with the aim to maximise fitness levels. “By the beginning of February we were already playing friendlies against other schools and in mid-February we moved to much stronger teams and academies like Bidvest Wits, Clapham High School and the School of Excellence,” he said.

Petersen believes his team is stronger than last year’s. “I am confident that this year we will make it to the finals again, but this time we are hoping to win. I have four players that were part of last year’s team and the others come from our under-18s.”

Three of Rosina’s players that competed in the Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup last year are currently contracted to Supersport United. They are defender Thabo Moloi and midfielders Cebo Meyiwa (Rosin) and Snethemba Ngidi. Zakhele Nkosi is currently training with Amazulu FC.

Entries for the Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup closed on 26 March and the South African Schools Football Association (SASFA) are still collating entries from around the country, but the number is expected to exceed the 2012 figure of 2 500. 

“This year will mark Sanlam’s fourth year of involvement in this tournament,” said Frank Louw, Sponsorship manager, Sanlam. “One of the reasons we got involved was to get as many footballers as possible between the ages of 15 and 19 to compete and give them the opportunity to be recruited into development structures to be nurtured and shaped into professional footballers. We are pleased that players from Rosina are now with a PSL Club and we look forward to seeing them reach the highest level of the game.”


About the Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup:

·         Named after prominent businessman Patrice Motsepe’s late mother, the Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup offers the biggest prize money at school level in Africa (R3.4 million in total). 

·         The sponsors are:  Sanlam, the Motsepe Foundation and the Sanlam Ubuntu-Botho Community Development Trust.

·         The primary objective of the tournament is to revive the culture of school football amongst students between the age of 16 and 19 years old.

·         The tournament also gives players the opportunity to showcase their skills to soccer scouts with the talented players being recruited into development structures to be nurtured and shaped into professional players.


Wednesday, April 3, 2013


The next round of provincial finals in the Danone Nations Cup tournament will be the Free State playoffs at the Clive Solomon Stadium in Bloemfontein on April 13th.


The six schools that won the regional titles in the province will meet on that day, with the eventual winners going on to represent the province at the national finals in Johannesburg in 22 June. The nine provincial champions will play off for the ultimate prize – a trip to London to represent South Africa at the Danone Nations Cup World Finals in September and to meet with ex French international, Zinedine Zidane.


The Free State provincial final tournament will be the third - Rietrivier Primary School came through as the Northern Cape winners, while Siphumele Primary School are winners of KwaZulu-Natal.


The schools that will be playing in the Free State provincial finals are: Monamodi Primary School representing Lejweleputswa Region; Selogile Primary School – Fezile Dabi Region; Luckhoff Combined School – Xhariep Region; Matswathaka Primary School - Thabo Mofutsanyana Region; Emang Primary School – Motheo Region and Tlong- Kganyeng Primary School – Masilonyana Region.

Three time provincial winners and reigning Free State champions, Mofulatshepe Primary School were knocked out at the cluster level this year.


Selogiloe Primary School, from Parys only started participating in the Danone Nations Cup last year. Their coach, Moses Phumo is very happy to have made it this far. “This is a big achievement for us considering we only started participating in the tournament last year. Making it to the provincials two times in a row shows that our efforts and hard work was not in vain.” he said.


“I think we stand a chance of winning the provincial title this time, because we have a much stronger and more confident team. Five of the players from last year’s team are back; they have the experience now and are able to motivate the new players.”


Selogiloe Primary started preparations for 2013 DNC immediately after losing at the provincials last year. “We started grooming the boys in June last year,” Phumo explained. “They have shown commitment and determination. Ever since January, we have been training every day after school and we will continue training throughout the Easter holidays.” Phumo believes that the exit of reigning champions Mofulatshepe Primary is a confidence booster. “Winning the provincial finals will make our school, the community and Parys proud. It’s not going to be easy but I am confident it is achievable.”

The coach sees his captain Mathibe Tshepang, a striker, and defender Motasi Xolile as his key players.

Also at the provincial finals will be Emang Primary School from Thabanchu, near Botshabelo Township. They started participating in the Danone Nations Cup in 2008.  This will be their first time at the provincial finals. Their coach, Thibogang Ranosi, says they have been trying for seven years and he is glad that they finally made it. “We persevered, even when times were hard, and the time has now come to show what we are capable of. I know we going to face tougher opponents, but anything is possible. I am proud of my team.”

He singled out his captain, Thapelo Senakgomo, and midfielders Kgathi Tlotlo and Katlego Mapitle as the players in his team to watch.

The next Danone Nations Cup provincial finals will be in Limpopo on April 20. The Danone Nations Cup is an under-12 competition involving thousands of boys and girls from around the world. Danone hopes that each year, more and more children will take part in this sporting event and live their dreams.


Tuesday, April 2, 2013

POWERADE & John Mitchell help school rugby coaches and players 'Power Through'

There are no limits when it comes to what you can achieve with peak performance on the sports field and Powerade understands what it takes to power through.  Together with former New Zealand All Black, and international rugby coach, John Mitchell, high school rugby teams will move to another level through the Powerade Schools Programme, a five month campaign tackling all aspects of rugby training as well as a competition to build camaraderie amongst all school athletes no matter what sporting code they participate.


The Powerade Schools Programme aims to help born sportsmen power through the challenges that face them at every level of excellence in their sport by motivating, inspiring as well as providing useful information on training regimes, and how Powerade intrinsically fits into all of these elements.


“School boys and girls make up a large proportion of sports drink consumers and our Powerade brand optimises excellence,” said Craig van Niekerk, Marketing Assets Manager, Coca-Cola.  “And we are aware of the South African youth’s insatiable thirst to be the best and achieve on the sporting field.  We are also fully aware that coaches play a vital role in the formation of players and we have therefore devised our programme around coaches and players.”


Mitchell, together with Powerade, has devised a programme to help both schools coaches and players excel in the sport of rugby. There are many facets to achieving this, and this programme is based around two events where John Mitchell will get to impart his wealth of rugby knowledge and experience. They are the Powerade Performance Academy Sessions with the coaches of the top schools in the country, and the Powerade Performance Sessions whereby John will travel to 40 schools around the country.


The one day Powerade Performance Academy Sessions coincided with the hugely popular Easter rugby festivals played in the north and south of the country. On the 29th of March all the first team coaches present at the KES, St Stithians and St Johns festivals in Gauteng gathered at St Johns, with all the first team coaches at the Oakdale festival in the Western Cape doing the same on the 1st of March.


The content delivered during these sessions was of a technical nature, and provided the first team coaches access to information normally only accessible to Super Rugby coaches. Content covered by John Mitchell on the day ranged from the latest technological and physiological trends, latest training and skills theory and game analytics to really pin point and discuss the elements needed to power through as a team. With all this to inspire the coaches to take performance to new levels, John also went into the importance of nutrition and proper hydration for players, the key element for overcoming performance limiting factors.


“I am passionate about coaching coaches,” said Mitchell.  “coaches are the key to generating higher performance in schools, and by focusing on developing the inner strength and abilities within the kids to overcome barriers, they will all be able to become the best they can be.  Through my association with Super Rugby I am aware of any rule changes and how these can affect the interpretation of the game.”


Post the session, the coaches will be able to stay up to date with peak performance through newsletters sent to all coaches twice a month. These will include skills training content, pictures and links to video demonstrations from the Powerade Performance Sessions, Powerade Performance update videos as well as great competitions to participate in.


The Powerade Schools programme then moves from coaches to the players through Powerade Performance Sessions. 100 identified schools in South Africa will be given a giant Powerade bottle that they will need to fill with Powerade bottle caps. During the time period of the 15th of March to the 19th of April, schools will have the chance to make this happen with the 40 top participating schools winning a Powerade Performance Session with John Mitchell.


The programme doesn’t stop there.  The second leg prize for all participating 100 schools on the Powerade Performance Session activation sees one school getting the opportunity to attend a live Super Rugby match in their region as a school. Selection for this great prize will take place on June 14th, allowing all the schools plenty of time to collect the bottle tops needed for victory.