Tag rugby introduced in Philippi

2017-04-13 06:00
Jongi Mei, youth programme manager for Tag Rugby Association, speaking with children, on Thursday, at Browns Farm Sports Field, Philippi.PHOTOS: Mbongiseni Maseko

Jongi Mei, youth programme manager for Tag Rugby Association, speaking with children, on Thursday, at Browns Farm Sports Field, Philippi.PHOTOS: Mbongiseni Maseko

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Dozens of children celebrated the International Day for Sports Development and Peace by undergoing coaching clinics and playing games previously unkown to them.

The event was organised by Tag Rugby Association in partnership with iThemba Labantu and Ikamva Sports and Performing Arts Initiative.

Jongi Mei, youth programme manager for Tag Rugby Association, said they invited children from the area and Samora Machel with the aim of introducing the sport to them.

“We want to enlightening children about the importance of participating in sport.

Our focus is on teaching them that they must respect their coaches, respect referees, respect their team mates and also respect their opponents.

Children here are not familiar with Tag Rugby that is why we decide to introduce it,” Mei said.

Mei said the day was first observed in 2013 by the United Nations which they work closely with.

Sophia Zittel, youth coordinator for iThemba Labantu, said they decided to form the partnership with Tag Rugby as they have a common vision to promote sport.

She said they want to extend their wings to accommodate other sport codes which they do not have.

“Children are not exposed to Tag Rugby here so it is important to make them aware about it.
Our idea is to promote sport and broaden through other communities. Sport keeps children busy and healthy. Some of the children here might end up becoming professional players for the sport,” Zittel said.

Lusindiso Melilwana, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for Ikamva Sport and Performing Arts Initiative, said the partnership is set to produce good results.

Melilwana said his organisation, which is based in Samora Machel, was formed in 2015 and they train about 550 children in different sporting codes and in performing art including stage performance, marimba, music and dancing.

He said they work closely with learners from Naluxolo Primary School and that they have 12 coaches.

Wanda Mphambaniso, 14, said he was “happy” for being part of the event.

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