Sports development academy proposed

2015-11-25 06:22

MARITZBURG Football Club, under its non-profit wing, Midlands Sport Development Foundation­ (MSDF) NPC, believes that a sports development academy will groom talented city sport players.

MSDF director, Brian Zuma told the Executive Committee that the proposed academy will be based at the Wanderers Club.

The academy will cater for soccer, netball, basketball, volleyball, hockey, snooker, table tennis, bowling, tennis, cricket and rugby and will groom children as young as 11.

Zuma said the Wanderers Club is a perfect location because there is enough space to build dormitories for the players.

“In football if you don’t have the money to buy players the next best thing is to develop your own. Facilities are very critical. You need the right surfaces to practice on. You need to have medical rooms. The academy will not only benefit us as Maritzburg United, but will develop the strength of players in the region.

“Royal Eagles already has its own academy. The more academies we have the better for the region and the province. We are looking at the Wanderers Club because it is centrally located and is very convenient for its positioning.

There is enough space to build infrastructure for the other sports codes like netball, volleyball, and so on. There is enough space to build residence for the academy,” said Zuma.

He added they are planning to outsource funding for building residences.

“The academy would accommodate 60 to 80 boys a year. We have followed the necessary processes of establishing an academy,” said Zuma.

Councillor Judith Lawrence asked if the academy will accommodate young girls.

“It is something we will consider as we grow. Women’s football is close to non-existent. We need to develop it through the South African Football Association structures first. Within the academy we will have scouts whose responsibility will be to work with schools and for each school we will work with sports co-ordinators. We will form a sub-committee for schools which will work directly with them so they can select talented children,” explained Zuma.

The academy will ensure there are competitive incentives for the players so they retain them.

Msunduzi municipal manager Mxolisi Nkosi said that the presentation has come at the right time.

“It has come at an opportune time to come up with a foundation that will accommodate all sporting codes and will accommodate all people of Msunduzi, irrespective of colour, creed or race,” said Nkosi.

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