By Vince van der Bijl
It has been a hectic year for sports at Ukhanyo Primary.
Construction of the new artificial surface sports field is the cherry on the top of this remarkable 12 months.
Cricket, rugby, soccer and netball age group practice under skills coach’s supervision for the 17 teams playing in school colours in the official school leagues for the first time.
Made possible by the dedication and enthusiasm of the coaches. And this is just the start!!
Cycling at Ukhanyo
Cycling is for the first time an official Ukhanyo sport with two cycling squads – under 11 and under 13.
40 children take part in cycling practice twice a week, under the supervision of Coach Sphura from the Songezo Jim Cycling Academy, with Lunga, Peter and Mdunyelwa, three staff members who have volunteered to coach the cyclists with him.
Earlier this year, these 40 learners were chosen for the squad by Coach Sphura and Coach Nceba and are using bicycles previously donated by BEN and PPA. For now, the children are still cycling on school premises having undergone their safe cycling training with BEN.
In the 4th term, the squad will venture out at first on Masi roads to gain skill and confidence, before tackling Kommetjie Road, giving them more experience with cycling amongst traffic. We are also looking forward to seeing the squad start taking part in races in 2019.
KFC mini-cricket has grown increasingly popular at Ukhanyo Primary – in just two short terms, there are now 5 age groups taking part in tournaments every Wednesday.
The under 8, 9 and 10 mini-squads play at Fish Hoek Primary School and the under 11 and 13 teams take part in the WPCA school leagues. We are especially pleased to report that our teams are winning 50% of their matches!
Head cricket coach Teddy is assisted by Jade and Sergio (who play both cricket and rugby for the local first teams) and Zuki and peter two staff volunteers. David Lewis too as an ex-Yorkshire player coaches the coaches with Vince. What a great coaching squad we have.
Cricket now is a core sport.
Netball is the only sport that has been consistently played at the school for many years. It is played 12 months of the year, even during off season (summer).
The school has 4 very successful netball teams, U10, 11,12 & 13 run by passionate coaches Nceba, Fez, Pam and Phila.
The netball teams take part in the school league matches in the netball season as well as friendlies in the off season.
The netball teams excel themselves.
This year, during the 3rd term, soccer was introduced as an official school sport for the first time. Now, there are 2 teams, U11 and U13, coaches by Head Coach Nceba with Siya and Star – all three highly skilled soccer players themselves, from local 1st teams.
The teams practice twice a week and play away matches with local schools from the South. They too have been very successful – soccer previously was a community and not team sport.
The variety of sports now taking place has gone far to raise the profile of the school, as players proudly wear Ukhanyo colours to meet their opponents weekly.
Success in the sports programme is due to the leadership of Nceba and Teddy with their team of coach’s dedication, enthusiasm and passion that they display.
Ukhanyo is blessed with such coaches – the character of the school shines through too. Win or lose they engender the spirit of sport and the life-skills coaching introduced by CoolPay has gone a long way to create a proud sporting legacy.
Update on Ukhanyo build
The exciting build of the Let’s Play field continues – and now that the ground has been levelled, the next step are the bricklaying of the surrounding wall and the laying of the concrete slab. The field should be ready by year end!
The consortium has as part of their pledge to transfer skills to the local community. During this process, a number of local Masi residents were chosen through the Ukhanyo School’s Governing Body. The candidates were interviewed and eventually 10 were chosen to assist the contractors with this project. This integrative skills transfer approach is undertaken to contribute towards transforming underprivileged communities.
The construction Builders team under Mr. Lesego Malatse are on schedule. Thank you again to the Consortium of Let’s Play/SuperSport, Walmart/Massmart, Hitachi, Builders and Belgotex for their overwhelming generosity.