Rehoboth to host national finals in August

By John Tuerijama

Afootball fiesta is anticipated in Rehoboth from 8 to 11 August with top-flight football action from 14 schools around the country expected to outplay each other in the hope of taking home the inaugural COPA Coca-Cola under-15 trophy.

The newly established under-15 championship, known as the ‘COPA Coca-Cola’, saw junior secondary schools from the 14 regions of the country competing in the regional championships in the hope of reaching the national finals.

Although only one school will represent each of the 14 regions, it is argued by many that the raw talent is in the regions and that schools that did not make the podium still boast a lot of potential that needs to be nurtured.

The winning schools will converge in Rehoboth, whilst a stiff competition is also anticipated for the girl’s football teams from Khomas, Erongo, //Karas and Omaheke that will feature on Saturday.

Speaking to this publication Namibia Schools Sports Union (NSSU) football coordinator Bessley Makaoula, who attended five regional championships, said he anticipates an epic battle at the national finals as players want desperately to be part of the team to represent Namibia at the Africa Cup in December.

Makaoula who saw //Karas, Oshana, Omaheke, Erongo and Otjozondjupa schools in action, could not say for certain which schools were likely to present a real threat, pointed to the abundance of talent at the various schools.

“It will be unfair to predict which school is likely to win the trophy but I must admit that there is talent in this country and it is up to the administrators to nurture this talent. It was talent on the display that needs to be identified.”

He further said the under-15 COPA Coca-Cola potentially displayed the best from the regions at the developmental stage and collectively schools – including those that did not make the nationals – proved that there is raw talent in the regions.

However, the NSSU football coordinator was quick to point out that after having watched a video clip of A Shipena High School he has no doubt the school would be a force to reckon with in the competition. He also pointed to //Karas-based Lordsville Combined School and Donatus Secondary School from Otjozondjupa region as having the talent to cause an upset. He further noted that Ongwediva Junior Secondary School has the potential to proceed further in the national finals.

The national selection committee will select the best possible under-15 team on display, of which a management committee will be established to polish and prepare the team for the eventual Africa Cup. The 14 teams are divided into two groups with matches expected to take place at St. Joseph’s Primary School field and the Rehoboth Sports Field.

Fixtures are as follows:

Rehoboth Sport Field: Mariental HS vs Eddie Bowe PS; Wennie du Plessis HS vs A Shipena HS; John Pandeni CS vs Lordsville CS; Tataleni HS vs Neyuva CS.

St. Joseph’s primary school field: Eehana CS vs Tsumeb SS; Donatus SS vs Mupini CS; Ongwediva JS vs Batubaja CS.