The sixth instalment of the much-anticipated Scara Ngobese Memorial Games got into full swing at the Somhlolo Ground on Monday, December 17.
The games will be played every day, apart from Christmas, and football fanatics are sure to be entertained for a total of 14 days during this festive season.
The LaLiga-supported games are a true reflection of humble beginnings with superior results as this modest tournament continues to be a breeding ground for the development of many prominent players who have made a name for themselves in the Premier Soccer League (PSL).
These include Zitha Macheke, Tshepo “Skhwama” Matete, Thabo Mosadi, and former Orlando Pirates winger, Patrick Thwala.
As is with all tournaments, competition is of major importance in the Scara Memorial Games. However, LaLiga together with the Scara Ngobese Trust aims to commemorate the life of the ex-Kaizer Chiefs winger with the youngsters of the community.
To hone the upcoming talent of Katlehong, a separate contest for the u13s, u15s, as well as u17s will run concurrently with the seniors, and LaLiga has arranged for the u13 and u15 teams to partake in a soccer clinic, which will be held on Friday, 21 December, at the same ground. The soccer clinic will be conducted by former professional footballers, together with local coaches, and the aim is to teach the juniors football basics and sharpen their skills for the tough competition ahead.
LaLiga South Africa’s managing director, Antonio Barradas, said being part of the games was the best way of promoting grassroots football and what better way to give back to South African communities than to lift the spirits of the young footballers.
“As LaLiga, it’s an honour to be part of the Scara Ngobese Memorial Games, and most importantly playing a role in celebrating the life and times of this great player,” he said. “We will also be conducting a soccer clinic for the little ones, where 600 balls together with merchandise will also be given to the u13s and u15s taking part in the tournament.”
Tournament chairperson, Mike Manana concurred with Barradas, saying: “Grassroots football is very important to our community as they not only bring the community of Kathorus together, but the games allow for the aspiring footballers to live their dream, take a step towards reaching their goals and importantly staying away from social ills, especially in this festive season.”
He also thanked LaLiga’s support and other sponsors’ involvement in the games, pleading for them to not conclude their endeavours in 2018 nor in Katlehong but to also extend their kindness across South African townships.
There will be 24 junior and 24 senior teams, who will be battling for the ultimate prize of R100,000, while the runners up will pocket R36,000. The semi-finals and finals – which will be played on December 30 and 31 will be held at the Huntersfield Stadium, ensuring the tournament closes with a definite bang.
The Scara Memorial Games are part of LaLiga’s efforts to provide its assistance when it comes to activities carried out across the footballing world relating to the promotion of the game, social responsibility, and grassroots development.