SAFA News – Sasol concluded a successful provincial visit, which included live streaming two Sasol League matches as well as a workshop for local coaches.
Bloemfontein in the Free State was the first stop.
This was also the first face-to-face activity for the Sasol League since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It was very important to connect with the coaches after the long break caused by COVID-19. We needed to transfer the mandate to the league coaches about the happenings at Banyana Banyana, as we know their players are aspiring to go there and so they should be prepared properly. We don’t have to stop there because the Sasol League remains the conveyor belt. So this gathering was very important and serves the purpose of what we want to do for women’s football,” said Dean Somerset – Manager: Group Brand & Sponsorships at Sasol.
SAFA Free State, who provided great support, was also delighted with the event.
“We are very grateful to Sasol for organising this visit, and it was very important that we have something like this. I am glad the coaches were enthusiastic as this indicates that they liked what they got from the national team coach. As a province, we are looking forward to hosting more of these, even with other national team coaches so we can empower our local coaches. Some players and a coach from the Sasol League have graduated to the Hollywoodbets Super League, and that is a plus on our side. Thank you very much to Sasol for this, we are truly happy,” said Letima Mogorosi: SAFA NEC member.
In the workshop that was streamed live, Banyana Banyana head coach Desiree Ellis dealt with topics like selection criteria, conditioning, what happens in the Banyana Banyana camp, scouting of players and performance analysis.
Here is what some of the participants had to say:
Lefu Rock Sehume: Central University of Technology : “We learnt a lot from this session, it was worth it to be here. I left the place very much empowered and perhaps a better person and coach. I will impart this knowledge not only to my players, but also to the technical team because the information we got here is better if it is known by many as it will help the entire team to grow.”
MJ Mashiloane: Kovsies FC : “This was a very empowering session and every enlightening. It was a great privilege to be here as a learnt a lot. We learnt that nurturing of players is important to get the best out of them. What was impressive was that she knows what she is talking about, and it coming from another female made more sense as I could relate to the situations she came up with. It was like all the answers were what I have been looking for. What I got here has really made me want to keep going.”
Palesa Mogorosi: Kovsies FC said she has learnt a lot.
“As a person that has started operating on the technical side of things I have learnt a lot. I didn’t know that coaches go through such a lot. It was also valuable to get this from a female perspective, more so because she is in a male-dominated industry. It was quite exciting and I could relate – I am glad I came.”
Ellis also got to watch two league matches at the University of the Free State – Central University Technology (CUT Ladies) beat Grassland Ladies 4-0, while Kovsies FC had the better of Ace Milan FC with a 4-1 victory.
“It was important to show these coaches that they are an important cog in the chain of development in women’s football. I was excited coming to this event, and I leave even more excited after the workshop. The key was to show them what we are looking for at national team level, and what is required, and what they can do to help us,” said Ellis.
“It was also crucial to dispel the notion about player selection – that only certain players are selected. What I also brought across is that without the Sasol League there won’t be progress in the development of women’s football – the fact is, not everybody can play in the Hollywoodbet Super League, so we have to give hope to those who are still upcoming. We can’t work in isolation, we need each other – and that is the message I left them with, because we have players at Banyana Banyana that are still playing in the Sasol League and the coaches need to prepare them for us.”
For Sasol, this was an important exercise.
“We are delighted with the way things went, and I believe we achieved our objective. We wanted to empower the coaches with the Banyana Banyana head leading them in a workshop, and we managed that. Secondly we wanted to show the country what Sasol League has in terms of players, and the two matches we watched did not disappoint, in fact they were good games and we streamed them live, something that is not normally done,” said Dean Somerset – Manager: Group Brand & Sponsorships at Sasol.
“We wanted to showcase women’s football for what it is and we did that, we wanted to promote our brand and we managed that, we wanted show that when we say we care about women’s football it is not just lipservice but we actually deliver. In short, this was a very succcessfull weekend for women’s football, in particular the Sasol League. Gratitude also goes to the province, they really outdid themselves in preparing for this visit, thus making sure that everything ran smoothly.”
Plans are already afoot to visit other provinces and details will released soon.