Netball brings learners together

2018-05-08 06:00
Girls enjoy a high school netball tournament organised by CoolPlay.

Girls enjoy a high school netball tournament organised by CoolPlay.

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Freedom Day got off to a great start for the CoolPlay netball players who gathered at Fish Hoek High School for their tournament.

About 100 girls aged between 14 and 19 from Masiphumelele High School, Ocean View High School and Bulumko High School clashed on the courts.

The tournament consisted of u.14, u.16 and u.19 teams. The u.14 and u.19 categories were won by Masiphumelele High, while Ocean View High won the u.16 category.

CoolPlay is a non-profit organisation that integrates valuable life skills into after-school sports training sessions. Starting off with humble beginnings at five schools with five coaches they call champions, the organisation now works with over 35 schools and has over 1000 learners, half of them girls.

Johan Schlebusch from CoolPlay says the tournament was a great success and the girls had fun. “Great netball skills were displayed by all teams and the girls really enjoyed themselves. The matches were played at a competitive level but the girls displayed good sportsmanship and team spirit throughout the day. It was a thoroughly enjoyable morning for the girls and what a great way to spend a public holiday,” he says.

Schlebusch says the tournament was of great significance, especially to the learners of Ocean View. “This was the first time the girls played at such a magnitude. For Ocean View it was a breakthrough because it is such a troubled society. They haven’t had netball in years and this meant so much to them. We had two learners from Kleinberg Primary School in Ocean View being selected to play netball for Western Province. This really means a lot to us and the area as well, given their challenges,” he says.

CoolPlay has been running for about nine years. They say they are grateful to donors who make their work possible and they pride themselves on equipping their champions as well as learners.

Each training session has a sports coaching objective and a life skills objective, which are closely related so that the sport can be used to demonstrate the life lesson.

“A CoolPlay champion, skilled in social and emotional learning techniques, conducts year-round rugby and netball training sessions, centred around a CoolPlay conversation. There are eight main principles like team goals, team values, identifying skills and character strengths, creating team spirit or cohesion and communication among other things. All this happens on the field,” he says.V For more information on CoolPlay, call 082 804 9025 or email


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