Keetmanshoop – Besides the health and physical benefits football provides, it also improves the emotional well-being of participants, life skills coach, Isack Hamata, said on Saturday.
He made these remarks while addressing close to 180 boys in Keetmanshoop, ahead of the inaugural Virgil Vries Under-15 Football and Healthy Lifestyle Championship.
Hamata said losing in football teaches young people to bounce back from disappointment and cope with unpleasant experiences. It also teaches them the importance of resilience.
He said the players must promote teamwork among themselves as this is a critical part of football.
He further encouraged the young players, predominantly from Keetmanshoop, not to neglect their education, as football is a short career. Hamata also urged them not to succumb to peer pressure and to always be respectful to their elders and teachers.
“Steer clear of vices such as alcohol and drugs and rather use your time to make positive contributions in your homes and surrounding areas,” he said.
The life skills lessons were conducted by Hamata and former Tigers midfielder, Rene Warner.
Enrico Blaauw, the organiser of the tournament, told Nampa on Sunday it aims to promote healthy lifestyles among boys.
“This tournament provides an opportunity to advocate change in our youth. We want to educate them on issues affecting their lives such as peer pressure, alcohol, drugs and others and at the same they are playing football and showcasing their talents,” he said.
Blaauw, however, expressed disappointment at the poor turnout of parents and teachers, as only a few showed up to support the young players.
Eighteen teams took part in the tournament, with Eagles Football Club being crowned winners. //Kharas Sport Academy finished second, while PK de Villiers ended third.
Mio Santero was the top goal scorer with seven goals, while Kholisile Isaack was declared player of the tournament. - Nampa