The 2019 edition of the annual Clinix Stix Morewa Soccer Challenge was launched today at the Nike Football Training Centre in Pimville, Soweto.
Present at the event was Clinix Health Group Chief Marketing Offcer, Matshepo Majola; SAFA Gauteng Chairman and NEC member Willie Mooka, Banyana Banyana forward Amanda Mthandi; football legends Johannes "Yster" Khomane, Finkie "MaThousand" Sekete and Arthur Zwane, as well as comedian and actor Kid Mabhuto Sithole.
The tournament is well known for unearthing new football talent and this time things haven't changed. Lionel Messi once said 'You have to fight to reach your dream. You have to sacrifice and work hard for it.'
Clinix Health Group and the Soweto Football Association (SFA) founded the Challenge with this in mind.
Dr Peter 'KOP' Matseke, CEO of Clinix Health Group and a close friend of Stix, has this to say:
"Our intention is not only to enrich the community by encouraging children to play football, but to also show them that a healthy lifestyle and healthy attitude can lead them to a brighter future. What we are witnessing here today is the culmination of years of planning, and now it has come to fruition. We are also proud to say this tournament has produced some of the best players in the country who have gone on to make a big name for themselves in the world of football - and that is what we are about, give them opportunities and the world is theirs," said Dr Matseke.
The Clinix Stix Morewa Soccer Challenge began in 2004 to commemorate the memory of the late Solomon 'Stix' Morewa - besides being the Marketing Director of Clinix Health Group, 'Stix' was also a soccer legend and a former President of the South African Football Association (SAFA). Stix, as he was fondly known in the football fraternity, was very passionate about football and believed that soccer could help with the development of the youth and also realise their potential. It is in his memory that Clinix Health Group honours him through the annual Clinix Stix Morewa Soccer Challenge.
This is the 15thyear of the Tournament, which has grown in leaps and bounds.
The Challenge has evolved into a competition that not only includes Under 9's playing, but has also illuminated the importance of female players being involved in the 'beautiful game'. Ria Ledwaba, the first female vice-president of SAFA, applauded Clinix Health Group for its involvement in encouraging more female teams in playing by including them in the tournament.
Football players such as Banyana Banyana Banyana vice captain, Refiloe Jane, who now plies her trade in Italy in the colours of European giants AC Milan, are alumni of the Soccer Challenge. Others who have graced the Soweto fields in this tournament are Sifiso Vilakazi, Sifiso Zulu, and Lehlohonolo Thuntsane.
This year the challenge has 1200 teams, including the ladies teams, playing.
"It is very pleasing and exciting to see that the Stix Morewa Soccer Challenge has grown so much - it was a dream of Bra Stix to get many players off the streets and involved in the game, and it has become a reality. Watching players, ranging from Under 9 to Under 17, playing to win in this tournament gives us satisfaction," said Phil Mogodi, Chairperson of the Soweto Football Association.
"The relationship that SFA has with Clinix Health Group made sense as both want to encourage the players to live healthy lifestyles and I am glad to say that we are on tract with that mission.
Taking part in the tournament are:
Boys Section - U-9, U-11, U-13, U-15, U-17 and Seniors
Ladies Section - U-15 and Seniors.
The competition for the juniors is already on going around Soweto, which has 9 Zones.
The tournament for the Seniors commences next weekend, once the draw has been conducted.
The finals will be played on the last week of November - all age categories on the same day.
For further enquiries, kindly contact:
Phil Mogodi on firstname.lastname@example.org +27 72 172 6043
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