The U-12 Danone Nations Cup football tournament provides the opportunity each year for thousands of young people around the world to engage in a healthy lifestyle through sport and good nutrition and, in the process, to dream big. This year, the dream will be to represent South Africa at the Danone Nations Cup World Finals in London later this year.
The first steps towards that dream have already started in South Africa and next week it begins for the primary schools in the Brakpan district, Gauteng, where 20 schools will be playing in the preliminary rounds of the tournament.
The district competition will run this Wednesday, and on March 18, and resume after the April school holidays. The District Finals will be held at Malandela Ground in Tsakane on April 19, with the winners there going through to the Gauteng Provincial Finals.
The key teams from the Brakpan area are: Lebone Primary School, Phumulani Primary School, Dalpark Primary School and Geluksdal Primary School, with newcomers Mangosuthu Primary School and Mandlethu Primary School being the ones to watch.
“We are prepared and ready for the kick off,” said Phakamani Primary School, team manager Sello Masiteng. “It’s not going to be easy beating the likes of Lebone Primary school as they have been dominating our cluster and we lost 3-1 to them in the inter district qualifiers last year. But this year we are more determined and the boys have been putting a lot of effort in their training”.
Masiteng says it’s too early to tell how things will go for them, but their aim is to reach the provincial finals, as they have never made it there before. “The players are looking forward to competing and meeting children from other schools. Hearing that the World Finals will be in London this year has brought excitement and enthusiasm to the players. A trip like that can change their lives.”