Crash leads Banyana's Sean Louw to coaching career path

Banyana Banyana goalkeeper coach Sean Louw, right, with Bloemfontein Celtic Ladies goalkeeper Sedilame Boseja./Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix
Banyana Banyana goalkeeper coach Sean Louw, right, with Bloemfontein Celtic Ladies goalkeeper Sedilame Boseja./Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

"Bitter pills may have blessed effects."

This proverb perfectly narrates the tale of Bloemfontein Ladies and Banyana Banyana goalkeeper coach Sean Louw after a motorbike accident put an abrupt end to his dream of playing professional football.

"I was going to school [Grey College in Bloemfontein] using my motorbike when a motorist skipped a stop sign and the car hit me. It was the end of me playing football. I was a goalkeeper at school, with high hopes of playing professionally,'' Louw reflected.

However, the accident in 2010 did not set the youngster on a path of self-pity as he took his love for goalkeeping into a different direction.

He picked himself up - broken femur, radius and all - and ventured into coaching.

"Seeing that I was not going to be able to play, I started coaching. I was a junior goalkeeper coach for boys, but Celtic owner Max Tshabalala insisted I work with the ladies team when I joined them from Roses United in 2014,'' said 26-year-old Louw.

The City of Roses lad secured the Banyana job after meeting head coach Desiree Ellis on a roadshow in 2017.

It was a matter of clicking at first sight for Louw and the Banyana tactician.

"Banyana were on a roadshow in Bloemfontein, I went there and introduced myself to Desiree. She liked me just like that.

"A few months after our first meeting, Banyana camped in Bloemfontein for their African Women's Cup of Nations qualifier against Lesotho. They had no goalkeeper coach and Ellis invited me into camp,'' he stated.

"I went to that camp and she [Ellis] had a look at my work. She and her technical team were impressed, and the rest, as they say, is history.

"Winning the Cosafa Cup and qualifying for the Fifa World Cup, in my first 12 months with Banyana, are my proudest moments,'' Louw said.

The Celtic Ladies keeper coach is also thankful to Orlando Pirates' assistant coach Rulani Mokwena for advising him when they met in 2016.

Louw talked of how Mokwena, while still at Mamelodi Sundowns, played a role in his career.

"I remember one day, Sundowns played Celtic at Dr Molemela Stadium and I spoke with Rulani. He told me to keep closer to people who've done this before, basically, everyone that's been in the game. From then we never stopped chatting.''

Louw boasts a sports management degree from Exercise Teachers Academy.

Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.