Back to school for 24-0 goalie?

2012-03-10 16:58

A few weeks ago, Thabang Louw’s biggest dream was to play for Kaizer Chiefs one day.

But now the young man, whose team shot to notoriety when they were thumped 24-0 by Mamelodi Sundowns in a Nedbank Cup match, has a new dream – to go back to school.

Louw, the 18-year-old goalkeeper for Northern Cape amateur team Powerlines FC, successfully fended off more than 40 shots at goal during his team’s clash with Sundowns in Kimberley last week.

The young man told City Press during an interview in his Northern Cape home town, Windsorton, that he “was not frightened at all during the game”.

“But I was angry at my teammates for dropping me. I quickly worked out the Sundowns technique for scoring goals, but I can’t defend against more than one attacker at a time.”

Louw, like most of his teammates, is unemployed.

He left home when he was 15 to find work so he could care for his unemployed parents, younger brother and sister.

Until recently, he worked on a potato farm outside Windsorton and earned R700 a month.

In the past week Louw – who speaks only Tswana and Afrikaans – has decided he needs to go back to school to learn English.

But he can’t afford it.

Every day, the Powerlines FC team gathers at club owner Denzel Ontong’s home.

They play cards or dominoes, practise soccer and sing gospel songs.

Ontong’s father Arthur founded the club in 1968, and he took it over when his father died years ago.

“The cost of running the club is about R15 000 a month, and I keep it going from the profit I make at my tavern and from selling greyhounds, which I breed.

“I don’t know how much longer I will be able to continue doing it,” he said.

Powerlines FC saw off all the opposition in the Northern Cape to book their clash with Sundowns.

“We found out three weeks before the game that we were going to play against Sundowns. It was an overwhelming feeling, which I can still describe now.

“I was nervous, because I think the stage was a bit too high for my players,” Ontong said. On the day, he urged Powerlines to “go out and do your best”.

And despite the massive losing margin, Ontong said he still considered it a win “in the sense that we played Sundowns and they succeeded to score in only 24 out of the 64 shots at goal”.

“Now people know us, and they know about Powerlines and ­Windsorton.

“That gives us the right to hold our heads up high.

“Our next step is to win our league and then to qualify for the Nedbank tournament next year again,” Ontong said.

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