Brebner reach Cup final
Bloemfontein’s Brebner Primary School are through to the Free State under-12 Danone Nations Cup provincial soccer finals taking place at Grey College this weekend. The finals will kick off tomorrow at 10am.
The school will be representing the Bloemfontein district for the first time after finishing top of the log in the Motheo regional finals that took place in Mahlatswetsa Primary School in Excelsior. Last year was their first experience in the tournament but they were knocked out at cluster level.
Coach, Siyabonga Mtshiwane, is a former Brebner pupil and now a substitute teacher and physical education instructor at the school. Before joining Brebner he coached at Kruitberg Primary in Noordhoek. He managed to get the team to the regional finals of the Danone Nations Cup in 2014.
The road to the final saw Brebner defeating Katamelo (Botshabelo district) 1-0; Unicom (Mantsopa 2 district) 2-0 and Mahlatswetsa (Mantsopa 2 district) 3-0. There were goalless draws with Tlotliso Primary (Naledi district) and Mokwena (Thab Nchu district).
The final log standings were: 1 Brebner (11 points), 2 Tlotliso (7 points), 3 Mahlatwetsa (6 points), 4 Katamelo (5 points), 5 Mokwena (4 poinst), 5 Unicom (3 points).
The six district finalists that competed in the Bloemfontein final played a round-robin competition and Brebner ended on top after winning three and drawing two of their games.
Speaking ahead of the game, Mtshiwane expressed satisfaction, saying “It’s a big moment for us…They boys have worked hard and we are here now.”
The players were nervous ahead of the regional finals, Mtshiwane says. “They had never competed in any tournament before. I have coached teams playing at this level in the past so I could advise and encourage them to focus on their own game and not worry about how the other teams play.”
The five teams that will be playing in the finals are Zamaleka Primary, Fezile Dabi; Brebner Primary, Moteo; Jaggersfontein Intermediate, Xhariep; Phaphama Intermediate TMD and Tikwe Primary, Lejweleputswa.
“It’s going to be a tough encounter but we are more than ready to put in the work and lift the trophy,” said Matshiwane.
The tournament has been regarded as a fantastic human adventure driven by Danone’s commitment to provide a sustainable platform for children’s health and wellbeing. This is the world’s largest international soccer tournament for children aged 10 to 12.