Harmony High School from the Free State is the 2011 Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup champions!
16 July, 2011. Harmony High School was crowned the 2011 Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup champions after beating rank outsiders, Westridge Secondary School from the Western Cape 4 – 3 on penalties at the Seeisa Ramabodu Stadium in Bloemfontein today, Saturday 16 July. Neither team managed to score in regulation time.
Experience, playing in an academy and home ground advantage should all contribute to the odds being in one’s favour and this was how Harmony took to the field for the final game. On the other hand Westridge Secondary School only started competing in the Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup in 2007 and this year is their first National Finals experience. In fact the school has only reached the Provincial finals once, in 2007.
From the first whistle Harmony went on the attack and left Westridge looking dazed. The home team capitalised on the situation and scored a goal which was disallowed being offsides. This seemed to spur the underdogs on and they settled down and through some good set pieces tried their hardest to score.
The second half was all in Harmony’s favour. They bombarded the goal mouth but just could not put the ball in the net and the game went to penalties where Harmony’s composure won them the match.
Harmony was definitely the better team on the day. While none of the players compete in a PSL Club development structure, such as the players from Johannesburg Secondary School (Orlando Pirates) and Rosina Sedibane (SuperSport United), the players have the best coaching, facilities and train daily as well as get match practise weekly. A luxury Westridge does not have coming from Mitchell’s Plain in Cape Town.
According to Harmony Coach, Patrick Mokoena, his success over the past four days was attributed to a combination of Mata Makeng (Central defender) and Bosman Kgaugelo (left back) who marshalled the back as well as Makhalanyane Mojalefa (Right wing) and Mokhele Thabo (left wing). They were to set the scene for striker, Lehlohonolo Mokoena to score vital goals. The latter three played in the 2010 Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup.
Westridge team manager, Andrew Absolon, is going home with his head held high: “Against all odds we came second and we are happy. This year we beat the best teams in the Western Province to get to the Finals and now we have beaten some of the best schools in the country and the experience we have learnt will benefit us. We will go back home and use our new found knowledge to prepare for next year.”
Absolon went on to say: “We have won R600 000 for the school and I am a happy man.”
Meanwhile, earlier in the day, Ncedo Senior Secondary School from the Eastern Cape beat favourites Johannesburg Secondary School from Gauteng 2 – 0 to end in third place taking home R500 000. Johannesburg Secondary receive R400 000. Goals were scored by Lungani Totyi and Xolile Ndingane.
Top Goalscorer: Lehlononolo Mokoena (Harmony)
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