Brainy on and off field

Daily Dispatch - - Sport - MARC STRY­DOM

Banyana Banyana are not just clever on the field‚ they are also highly qual­i­fied off it‚ with al­most all their play­ers ei­ther pos­sess­ing diplo­mas or de­grees‚ or in the process of earn­ing them.

The na­tional women’s team again put their un­der­achiev­ing men’s coun­ter­parts in the shade qual­i­fy­ing for next year’s World Cup as brave los­ing fi­nal­ists on penal­ties in the week­end’s Africa Women Cup of Nations (Aw­con) against 10-time vic­tors Nige­ria.

Banyana – many of whom have stud­ied on bur­saries in the US – would surely also make the men’s side blush for their im­pres­sive list of aca­demic qual­i­fi­ca­tions.

From a squad list of 32 play­ers who took part in a pre-Aw­con train­ing camp at the Pre­to­ria Univer­sity High Per­for­mance Cen­tre, only two don’t have a de­gree or diploma‚ or are not study­ing.

One is cap­tain Ja­nine van Wyk‚ who at 31 has her Caf B-li­cence coach­ing qual­i­fi­ca­tion. Twelve play­ers have de­grees and five diplo­mas. A fur­ther 13 are study­ing.

Rhoda Mu­laudzi‚ the Can­berra United for­ward‚ has a diploma in sports man­age­ment and bach­e­lor of tech­nol­ogy de­gree in busi­ness‚ both from Vaal Univer­sity of Tech­nol­ogy. Simphiwe Dludlu‚ who like Mu­laudzi was at the pre-Aw­con camp but missed the tour­na­ment‚ has a bach­e­lor in sports sci­ence and her Caf A and B coach­ing li­cences‚ and Uefa B li­cence. Winger Re­filoe Jane has a BTech in sports man­age­ment from Tsh­wane Univer­sity of Tech­nol­ogy.

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