Kolisi inspires youngsters in city rugby programme
firstname.lastname@example.org THE story of Springbok rugby captain Siya Kolisi is inspirational: he grew up in the township of Zwide in Port Elizabeth, but it was rugby which saw him enrol at the prestigious Grey College in the city and go on to play provincial and then national rugby.
Yesterday, a group of boys from townships around Pretoria practised rugby moves, probably dreaming of the success of a Kolisi or Lwazi Mvovo.
The boys are part of the Moshate Rugby Cup programme founded by St Alban’s College rugby director Kennedy Tsimba, himself a former Blue Bulls and Cheetahs player.
The idea of Moshate which started in 2016, is to identify and nurture talent among children under 13 in and around the city who would not otherwise get such an opportunity.
But it is not only about rugby… the programme offers an all-round service, including encouraging participants to understand the importance of a focus on academic excellence.
Tsimba said the programme could potentially find the next Blue Bulls player or another Kolisi and provide the opportunities to unlock his or her talent.
Children taking part in the programme have been drawn from communities such as Soshanguve, Atteridgeville, Stanza Bopape, Kgomotso, Tswaing and Eersterust.
Standard Bank has come to the party with a sponsorship to the tune of R100 000.
Standard Bank manager for Tshwane central Lumé Kleynhans said the bank had no doubts about the value of this investment.
Tsimba said big rugby teams scout in the Eastern Cape, for example, but there was less of a culture in growing rugby talent in Tshwane townships.
Coach Sello Maswanganye said: “This is a great opportunity for our children in the townships because a lot of the times they play against each other. With this opportunity, they get to travel to play against other communities,” while coach Leroy Hartze of Eersterust said he was proud that children from his community were afforded the chance to compete and face stronger teams from outside Eersterust.
Kgomotso Mohlala and Simphiwe Skhosana, both 12, from Soshanguve, said they enjoyed the event because they loved rugby.