Ex-ref at heart of rags to riches tale
FORMER Safa referee William Nchefu said he could not bear to watch Leruntse Lesedi High players take the field in torn jerseys and shorts, with soccer boots held together by masking tape.
The Mogale City head of traffic with a golden heart bought a new soccer kit, including tracksuits, soccer boots and tog bags, for the players from the North West school at the SuperSport SA Schools Shootout tournament held in Benoni at the weekend.
"I used to work in Makwassie in North West, so I know two or three boys in the team because of their parents. We are talking about an area that does not have an ATM," he said.
"When I saw them play soccer so poorly kitted out, my heart was left bleeding.
"Some of them used masking tape to keep their soccer boots from falling apart. They were very old boots indeed.
"When they were preparing for the SuperSport SA Schools Shootout, the children from Leruntse Lesedi High school were forced to go to town to play on a ground with grass as there is none with turf in their village.
"I will be so happy to see two or three boys from this team playing for Bafana Bafana one day," said Nchefu, who used to referee in the Vodacom League in Free State.
"Household names like Enoch Molefe and Steven Moshotle are some of the guys I refereed with. I'm so happy they are now in the PSL."
Nchefu also urged South Africans to support Sport and Recreation Minister Fikile Mbalula in his effort to revive school sports.
"That is a step in the right direction, we need a solid school programme to do well as a country."
The SA Schools Shootout is a joint project between Mbalula and Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga, with SuperSport also on board.