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Sunday, 28 June 2009 10:47

Maritzburg College Rugby

It will always be a topic that causes a hot debate - who is the strongest Rugby school in KZN, or the country for that matter.  These days, its far more difficult to ascertain with the additional matches being played.  If pure tradition and sustained quality were the measure, few would disagree that Maritzburg College has proved itself to be one of the foremost rugby playing schools in KwaZulu-Natal for more than a century.

Wednesday, 24 June 2009 22:03

Thuthuka Goba- Hockey Keeper

Six KZN boy's were recently selected for the South African U18 Hockey Team at the interprovincial tournament held at the AB Jackson GreenFields Turf in Pietermaritzburg. Captain of the KZN Coastals, Greg Last and Thuthuka Goba of Midlands talk about their achievements, how they have been able to succeed in the sport and what got them started.

What got you started in hockey Thuthuka?

Well I played cricket at primary school but when I arrived at Maritzburg College I was suddenly exposed to more boys competing for places in the teams and more sports. So I tried a bit of basketball but I was still just trying to find my place. By the time the second term arrived I was playing hockey but I was an infield player playing sweeper and I was trialling out for the "E" and "D" team. However there was a shortage of goalkeepers at that time and I went for that position because I felt I was good with my feet and I can kick the ball. That year I made Midlands U14 B and amazingly the next year I made the Maritzburg U16 A side as well as Midlands U16 and SA U16 side. This year has been amazing too because I have been selected for the SA U18 side.


Have all these successes in hockey come as a surprise to you?

Well, I was surprised when I made SA U16, when I made that team I realised that I was good enough to play this sport at a high level. I told myself that if I can make it when I was underage what prevents me been selected when I am playing in my age group and I would have been quite upset with myself if I did not make the SA U18 team. I really was working hard to get selected.

You talk about working hard at the game, just how much of work goes into your game?

Well what I enjoy as a goalkeeper is that it is not as intense as all the outfield players training. It is more a mind thing; you have got to get into your own zone as a keeper and stay calm and collected. Everyone else has to worry about their fitness and stick work but for me I must look at my technique and keep my reflexes sharp. You have got to have a good eye for the ball, a lot of the situations in the game require you to save a goal that normally you wouldn't save but because your reflexes are well trained you are able to pull off a save somehow. So during training I get tennis balls fired at me at great speed which helps in this area.

If I didn't talk to my players I would be a lazy couch potato


It is very noticeable whilst you are playing that you are very vocal at the back shouting out instructions to your defenders. Does this help the team?

If you can control your defenders then everything is more organised and you don't as a keeper have to worry about balls coming from different directions. I feel a lot more comfortable when everyone is doing exactly what I am telling them because then I don't have to do so much work. Talking to the players also helps me to stay focused and to be a lot more organised. For example if there is no marking in the midfield then my defenders are in disarray and they take the men I am supposed to be marking and it just leads to confusion. So by continuously talking to the guys it is going to keep the defence orderly and composed. If I don't talk I am just a lazy couch potato at the back so by talking to my players during the game I feel in control I feel so much more confident and it keeps me in the game constantly.

Maritzburg College is synonymous with hockey, has this helped you in your development?

Well to be honest if I never came to College I would have never played hockey and would have just stuck to basketball and soccer. Here at College they take pride in everything they do, many people think College is a rugby school but if you are playing hockey you get that feeling that your sport is also very special and that they care about what you are doing.


Does the coaching at Maritzburg College make a difference?

The coaches here are awesome. I remember my U14 coach was really concerned about our fitness and gave me that belief that we can win games and winning is so important. When I lost my first game in U16 after I don't know how many games it was a terrifying experience really. There are different coaching methods as you progress and the game gets more demanding. When you jump to Mr. Bechet's level it is something totally different. He is a "unity" type of coach, " listen to me, you do what I do and you will win..." He has all the angles covered and his coaching really works. It really is a privilege to play for College.


Don't be scared to try something new in sport


What about a future, is hockey something that could be a career?

No not really. There is no money in the game in South Africa. A couple of guys who I have spoken to who play professionally only get paid about R10 per hour which is not enough to live on really. However the London 2012 Olympics is a goal that I would like to consider if South Africa can qualify. I will probably still keep on playing in University after school.


Any advice for a youngster wanting to achieve what you have?

I would tell them not to be scared to try something new, because honestly I never thought I would be where I am right now. A lot of my friends, being a black guy playing hockey, were very negative about it, but you must do what you want to do and you will go places.


Having coached 47 South African U18 hockey players and another 11 South African Men's Hockey players as well as being involved in coaching cricketing stars Jonty Rhodes and Kevin Pietersen, Maritzburg College have in Mike Bechet a Director of Sport who has a passion for his school and the sports which he has seen its boys play for more than 27 years. We caught up with the man behind Maritzburg College's sporting success.

Wednesday, 24 June 2009 20:40

Maritzburg College- Hockey MIC

Having produced 24 international hockey players, six who have represented South Africa at the Olympic Games and a staggering 44 SA Schools Under 18 players, Maritzburg College is recognized as one of the premier schools in the sport of hockey. In the last 2 years College were able to produce an 80.3% win record across all their teams results from the 1st XI down to the 14F team.It is a record to be proud of and one which sees College players striving to maintain and improve upon year in and year out. Brandon Swart is the Master in Charge of the sport at College and he shared his views as to why Maritzburg College remain so dominant in hockey.

Friday, 20 March 2009 14:26

Patrick Lambie - Michaelhouse Rugby Star

patrick lambie 1

Michaelhouse rugby fullback Patrick Lambie does not immediately strike you as one of the most talked about schoolboy rugby players in the country. Neatly turned out in his blazer, hair immaculate, the polite and soft spoken Lambie appears unlike what you would expect. However the quite demeanour soon disappears when you realise the pedigree of the player, twice selected for South African Schools and already on a 2 year contract with the Sharks Rugby Academy he is destined to be seen a lot more of in the years to come.

Friday, 20 March 2009 15:50

Keith Thompson - Kearsney Rugby Coach

Keith Thompson

Since 2002  sport at Kearsney College has been directed by Keith Thompson, former provincial rugby player and coach of premier club Harlequins, Natal U20’s and assistant coach for the SA 7’s side.


Wednesday, 24 June 2009 22:17

Only One Team Left Standing in KZN



This was always going to be a tough game with Westville having a great season and doing well against some of the other top rugby schools in KZN. The kick-off time had been moved to 11:30am on Saturday morning the 20th of June to accommodate the British Lions first test Match against South Africa in Durban. The whole province had been looking forward to the tough encounter and there was a lot of banter between old boys of the two schools in the lead up to Saturday's match.

    There can only be a few words to describe the Glenwood boys as they took on the 20 best school rugby teams in the world. Awesome, Courageous, determined, passGlenwoodionate, committed and again Awesome. We were pretty devastated after the semis loss and the boys wanted to make sure that we take something back home for everyone to be proud of. De La Salle College are the NZ champions and are a great team, you only need to look at the scores throughout the tournament to know that. The y have a massive pack that is mobile and are complimented by fast quick footed backs that like to attack the line.

Monday, 04 May 2009 21:00

Sanix World Youth Rugby 2009

The Glenwood 1st XV played their first official game in the SANIX WORLD YOUTH RUGBY CHAMPIONS 2009 on Tuesday, 28 April 2009. The team played Higashi Fukuok High the number one Japanese school. The boys found the match tough, having to prove themselves throughout the game. Coach Sean Erasmus states that the stadium was packed for this opening game of the tournament and that the team were well supported throughout the game.

Tuesday, 02 June 2009 02:00


Tall and athletic and with a determination to make his mark on the sport, Clifton College’s Kushen Kishen is a cricketer which seems to have all the attributes to see him rubbing shoulders  with some of the top names in the world of cricket in the near future. Seeing himself as a genuine all-rounder Kushen is arguably one of the fastest schoolboy bowlers in the country and, as his name suggests the batters will need some padding to cushion his deliveries.

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