Ikhwezi Lesizwe Primary school principal has urged others township schools to follow suit and emulate her hockey playing wizards.The team has been ruling the school’s hockey scene, winning the Western Province title for three consecutive years.In December at a lavish Sports Awards ceremony hosted by the Department of Arts, Sports and Culture in Jozi, the school was voted the second best in the development section. Norma Mayeye was in a buoyant mood when Sports Vision visited her office on Wednesday morning. Her arms outstretched, Mayeye, gave us dollops of information on how the school developed into the “fearsome opponents for other teams”.“It’s not been easy but our coaches, parents and players showed so much dedication and now we are reaping the rewards,” she said.Mayeye remembered how she spotted two boys “playing with the locals after school hours in an open field”. “That drew my attention as a principal. I wanted to know more about this sport. I requested to meet the coach to inquire further. The coach was Gloria Baartman and she immediately availed herself,” she explained. From then on she invited Gloria to start coaching interested learners inside the premises.“It was a strategic move to invite these boys to come in a safe environment. Gloria agreed despite the conditions of our grounds. I felt that they are within my reach. “The motive behind all this was to get more learners to benefit and have an opportunity to develop the skill and to play a sport largely associated with Model C Schools,” she said.Mayeye then sold the idea to the School Governing Body, who were immensely “bowled over and welcomed it with open hands.” “I took this further by scouting for interest amongst the teachers and we were set for a long road in developing the game,” she boasts with a smile. Later the Department Culture Arts and Sport heard about their school involvement in hockey and started building a relationship with them providing some equipment.The team got a boost when they roped in coach Akhona Mlambo. “Within no time with Akhona’s tactics we outplayed all the schools in the Western Province that had long history in playing hockey,” she said.But Mayeye’s quest is to see her school’s success rubbing off on other township schools. “We are the only township school involved and I am appealing to other principal to encourage children to take part in this game,” she said.Director of School Sport, Francois Lubbe, hailed Mayeye for her passion.“We have seen her school grow from nobodies to champions. Trophies will carry dust but memories of them lifting it will last forever,” he said.Western Cape chairperson of primary schools hockey, Noreen Wannacot, said it was a “bold to decision” on their part to introduce hockey to the school.“This has paid dividends, we have champions today, champions who are supported by loving parents and teachers,” she said.Wannacot also heaped praises on the team’ s head coach Gloria Nobuntu Baartman and Akhona Mlambo.She made a special mention of Mayeye.“The principal’s passion is infectious and she leads from the front,” she said.