The excitement of the Nedbank Cup reached new heights as the draw for the Nedbank Cup quarter-final took place on Monday, 18 March 2024. It was hosted by the Premier Soccer League (PSL) and Nedbank.

This follows an exhilarating round of 16, where football fans witnessed thrilling matchups and remarkable displays of talent. The spotlight now shifts to the remaining 8 teams vying for glory in South Africa’s most prestigious knockout football competition.

ALSO READ: Broos names final squad for friendlies in Algeria

Reflecting on the journey thus far, Nthabiseng Matshekga, Executive Head of Integrated Marketing and Experience at Nedbank, expressed enthusiasm for what lies ahead.

“The Nedbank Cup has always been a platform for showcasing the best of South African football, and the round of 16 did not disappoint. As we prepare for the quarter-final draw, the anticipation and excitement among fans keep on growing. We also look forward to seeing which teams will emerge victorious and continue their quest for the sought-after trophy.’

The quarterfinal draw signifies a crucial moment in the tournament, as teams are 1 step closer to etching their names in South African football history. With each game poised to deliver intense competition and unforgettable moments, football enthusiasts from all over the country can expect captivating encounters on the field.

Nedbank Cup quarter-final draw revealed 
Nedbank Cup Trophy

ALSO READ: Registration for DStv Schools Netball Challenge open

The Nedbank Cup quarterfinal draw also symbolises a celebration of the tournament’s dedication to innovation and fan engagement. Building on the success of initiatives like the Ya Rona House, which has also redefined the concept of fan experiences, Nedbank hosted its inaugural fan event this past Saturday.

This event, attended by football luminaries such as Siphiwe Tshabalala, Teko Modise, and Primo Baloyi exemplified the ongoing commitment to providing immersive and interactive experiences for football enthusiasts, further enhancing the excitement surrounding Ke Yona Ya Rona.

“We are proud to be at the forefront of initiatives that bring fans closer to the heart of the game,” remarked Matshekga.

“From the launch of Ya Rona House to the introduction of groundbreaking fan incentives, the Nedbank Cup is about more than just football – it’s about creating unforgettable moments and fostering a sense of community among supporters.”

The Nedbank Cup’s mix of unexpected results and fan-centered innovations promises an unforgettable experience both on and off the field. The quarterfinal matches will unfold in April, with exact dates and venues to be confirmed by the PSL.

NEDBANK CUP QUARTER-FINAL DRAW RESULTS 

AmaZulu FC v Orlando Pirates FC

Stellenbosch FC v SuperSport United

University of Pretoria v Mamelodi Sundowns FC

TS Galaxy FC v Chippa United

South Africa’s most thrilling netball tournament, the DStv Schools Challenge, is back and registration is now open. Schools across the country are invited to join in the action-packed journey that leads to the national finals on 12-13 July 2024.

ALSO READ: Springboks and Kolisi in line for top Laureus awards

Registration steps 

  1. Visit the SA Schools Netball website at www.saschoolsnetball.co.za

2. Click on the League Registration tab

3. Select the province your school is in

4. Complete the Sportivo registration form with your school’s details and hit submit. You’ll receive a confirmation email to seal the deal

“Netball is the biggest girls’ and women’s sport in the country. This event offers young female athletes the chance to catch the eye of talent scouts, potentially paving the way to higher honours and one day representing South Africa,” says SuperSport CEO, Rendani Ramovha. 

“As an organisation, we are ‘Here for Her’, and that means giving opportunities for young women to participate and immerse themselves into the sports they love,” he said. 

DSTV SCHOOLS NETBALL CHALLENGE IS BACK 

Last year’s competition drew over 26,500 girls from over 2650 registered high schools across South Africa’s nine provinces. Affies Meisieskool clinched victory in the Botho finals, while Hlabi Secondary sealed a second title in the Ubuntu stream. As part of their prize, the winners enjoyed an unforgettable experience at the 2023 Netball World Cup final in Cape Town.

Registration for DStv Schools Netball Challenge open
DStv Schools Netball Challenge

The DStv Schools Netball Challenge (DSNC) aims to unearth the future stars of South African netball who’ll ultimately become part of the national teams. It serves as a vital talent scouting platform for universities and the Baby Proteas. This initiative is made possible through a collaborative partnership with South African Schools Netball, the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture, the Department of Basic Education, and other key stakeholders. Together, we are dedicated to nurturing and elevating netball talent across South Africa.

“Without opportunities, we will never discover the amazing talent in our country when it comes to sport. Without funding, we will not have many opportunities. With a partner like MultiChoice, both are attainable and measurable and that is why we value their continued support,” says Di Woolley, South African Schools Netball President.

Since the inception of the DSNC, 18 players have gone on to represent select universities in the Varsity Cup. They also found a home in Division B of the Telkom Netball League.

Furthermore, six players from the previous season were selected to be part of the Baby Proteas camp. Preparing for the Netball World Youth Cup 2025 Africa qualifiers scheduled to take place this month.

The PSL has confirmed that the DStv Premiership match between TS Galaxy and Mamelodi Sundowns has been postponed. The decision comes after the Bus accident involving Galaxy in which a motorist died. 

Although no one from the Galaxy side was physically injured, the players are believed to have been traumatized.

ALSO READ:  Condolences pour in for the late Siphiwe Mkhonza

The clash was scheduled for 19:30 at the Mbombela Stadium in Mpumalanga. 

“The Premier Soccer League (PSL) hereby confirms the postponement of the DStv Premiership fixture between TS Galaxy FC and Mamelodi Sundowns scheduled for this evening, 06 March 2024, at Mbombela Stadium (19h30). The decision has been made in consideration of the extraordinary circumstances following an accident involving the TS Galaxy FC team bus and another motor vehicle on Tuesday afternoon,” the PSL said in a statement. 

The PSL has postponed the TS Galaxy and Mamelodi Sundowns match
TS Galaxy Bus damaged

TS GALAXY V MAMELODI SUNDOWNS MATCH HAS BEEN POSTPONED 

“The PSL extends its understanding and support to TS Galaxy FC during this challenging period. We also acknowledge the impact of this decision on all stakeholders and sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused.”

“Details regarding the rescheduled fixture will be communicated in due course.” Other DStv Premiership matches are scheduled to go ahead on Wednesday.

Former teammates, clubs, coaches and associations have sent their condolences following the passing of Siphiwe Mkhonza. Mkhonza, who was now a football analyst, passed away on Tuesday morning.

This follows a long battle with a kidney infection which also saw him spend time at the hospital.

ALSO READ: Banyana beat Tanzania, set for a battle with Nigeria

The former Golden Arrows and Kaizer Chiefs defender passed on in the early hours of this morning at home.

“Mkhonza affectionately known as “Dr Mnandi” is currently employed by SABC, and has also been suffering from a kidney infection for a long time,” the family announced.

“He was admitted at Charlotte Maxeke a month ago and was released after showing signs of recovery.

“Mkhonza has been taken care of by his Girlfriend and the mother of his three children Ms Nondumiso Masengemi at their home in Roodepoort,” read the statement.

“The family wishes to thank his former employer and his colleagues at SABC, fellow football legends from the stable he belonged to and friends for their support during his illness.”

Mkhonza is survived by his children, his father Joseph Mkhonza, his Mom Phindile Mkhonza and also his brother.

Condolences pour in for the late Siphiwe Mkhonza
Siphiwe Mkhonza working for SABC Sport

COLLEAGUE SEND CONDOLENCES TO THE LATE SIPHIWE MKHONZA

“The SABC Sport team extends its deepest condolences to the Mkhonza family and friends during this difficult time,” said the SABC.

“The South African Football Association sends its deepest condolences to the friends and family of Siphiwe Mkhonza.” – SAFA

“Kaizer Chiefs are deeply saddened to learn of the untimely passing of Siphiwe Mkhonza. Dr. Mnandi” served the Club with distinction. As one of us, the entire Kaizer Chiefs family mourns with his loved ones. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.” – Kaizer Chiefs.

“Lamontville Golden Arrows would like to extend our condolences to the family and friends of Siphiwe Mkhonza who passed away today.” – Golden Arrows.

“Everyone at SuperSport United is saddened to learn of the passing of Siphiwe “Dr Mnandi” Mkhonza. Our heartfelt condolences go out to the bereaved family and friends.” – SuperSport United.

Banyana Banyana are now two games away from qualifying for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games after beating Tanzania 1-0 in a second leg Third Round CAF Women’s Olympic qualifier at the Mbombela stadium on Tuesday night.

The African Champions came into the tie with a strong aggregate score after beating the Tanzanians 3-0 away from home in the first leg in Dar es Salaam on Friday.

ALSO READ: Springboks and Kolisi in line for top Laureus awards

However, the Sasol-sponsored team knew that the job was not completed. They worked hard to ensure that they kept the visitors at bay in Mbombela.

It was a rusty start for the hosts, but they visibly grew in confidence as the game progressed with the vociferous crowd at Mbombela stadium cheering them on.

Banyana Banyana are now two games away from qualifying for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games after beating Tanzania 1-0 in a second leg Third Round
Banyana Banyana in Mbombela

Despite a few chances created in the opening period, the two sides could not find a breakthrough and the match was still goalless at the halftime break.

The elusive goal that the crowd had been waiting for finally came in the 57th minute when a Kholosa Biyana free kick found Thembi Kgatlana, who calmly slotted home the opener to give the Tanzanians a big mountain to climb.

The visitors displayed a great fighting spirit and tested Banyana Banyana goalkeeper Kaylin Swart a few times, but none of their chances materialized into the equalizer they so desperately sought.

BANYANA BANYANA TWO GAMES AWAY FROM OLYMPICS QUALIFICATION

Coach Desiree Ellis’ charges created numerous chances but despite their efforts, they could not find the second goal that the fans in the stands were calling out for.

The next hurdle for Banyana Banyana will be Nigeria’s Super Falcons in a two-legged match to be played between 1-9 April. The winner will be one of the two African nations to qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Tuesday night’s second leg clash against Tanzania also served as a special tribute to Jermaine Seoposenwe, who became the 10th Banyana Banyana player to win 100 international caps.

The Springboks and national captain Siya Kolisi have been rewarded for their achievements yet again by being nominated for top Laureus awards.

The Springboks, who also won the Laureus World Team of the Year awards following their RWC triumphs in 2007 and 2019, have been nominated for the same award yet again.

ALSO READ: Limpopo Softball prepares for Championships

They will be up against the Manchester City Men’s Football team. The Spain Women’s Football team. European Ryder Cup Golf team, the Oracle Red Bull Racing Formula-1 team, and Germany’s Men’s Basketball team.

Kolisi, who defied the odds by recovering from a serious knee injury he suffered in April to lead the Boks to their second RWC title in a row in October, has been nominated for the Laureus World Comeback of the Year Award.

The Laureus Awards, which honours, recognises and celebrates the world’s greatest athletes, the inspirational power of sport and its ability to change lives, will be hosted in Madrid in April.

Springboks and Kolisi nominated for Laureus awards
Springboks lift the World Cup Trophy

SA RUGBY PROUD AFTER SPRINGBOKS WERE NOMINATED FOR THE LAUREUS AWARDS

SA Rugby President Mr Mark Alexander was proud of the recognition the Springboks and Kolisi received for their brave efforts to become the first country to win the Rugby World Cup four times and wished them luck for their respective awards.

“The Springboks deserve every ounce of recognition they receive for their massive accomplishment in France last year, and we are delighted to see them in line for the Laureus World Team of the Year Award,” said Mr Alexander.

“Their heroics on and off the field were remarkable, especially considering their tough road to the World Cup final.

“But the victory in France was more than just an 80-minute rugby match – it was a triumph for South Africa both in nation building and social cohesion, and we hope that the effects of the Boks’ success will continue to radiate through the sport and transfer to other sporting codes for years to come.”

Mr Alexander also praised Kolisi, who staged a dramatic recovery from a serious knee injury which many thought placed his Rugby World Cup hopes in doubt, thanks to his hard work and intense rehabilitation to lead the team by example on the field.

“Siya’s hard work and determination to recover for the World Cup, and the fact that he managed to achieve this feat beyond all doubts was special,” said Mr Alexander.

“It takes a warrior to do something so remarkable, and that journey made it even more extraordinary to see him lift the cup for the second time in a row.

“We are extremely proud of the Springboks and Siya, and we wish them luck for the awards ceremony.”

Limpopo softball men and women teams, affectionately known as Dinare and Dinose respectively, are well encamped in Seshego township buoyed by the thrill of adventure ahead of the National Provincial Championships (NPC) which they will be hosting next month.

The inter-provincial tourney is slated for March 19 to 23 at the Polokwane Cricket Grounds.

ALSO READ: Bafana finish third at the 2023 AFCON tournament 

Played under the auspices of Softball South Africa (SSA), this annual event is the national game’s Holy Grail in which almost all the provinces converge to exchange bats.

Despite playing on home soil, Dinare and Dinose are bracing themselves for fierce antagonism. They will have plenty to prove that they are the custodians of the national game. In a province revered as the home of softball.

Limpopo Softball prepares for home championship spectacle 
Limpopo Dinare softball team

SOFTBALL IN LIMPOPO PREPARES FOR PROVINCIAL CHAMPIONSHIP 

The men’s head coach, Thapelo Seshoka made a statement of intent that he would reclaim the provincial honour after Limpopo won the NPC seven times in succession. A milestone never accomplished by any other province.

Seshoka’s blueprint to rewrite the provincial history crafted by his predecessor, Lemo Raphasha was to reselect the old guard with international experience to forge a generational mix of veterans and novelty acts.   

Biya Matlala and his female army will have to substantiate that their bronze achievement in Durban was not a fluke. Their third position was a ground-breaking feat ever in the record books of provincial women’ softball. 

The team will continue with the training camps over weekends. Leading to the NPC while domestic leagues are in full swing.   

By MOYAHABO MABEBA

*MABEBA is LSA’s Head of Marketing and Publicity and PRO is Capricorn Sports Confederation.

Bafana Bafana walked away with the bronze medal after a third-place finish at the AFCON in Ivory Coast. This is after beating DR Congo 6-5 on penalties in the tournament third-place play-off on Saturday night.

Mamelodi Sundowns goalkeeper Ronwen Williams once again led from the front as he saved two penalties during the penalty shootout. He saved the final kick from Meschak Elia during sudden death to win the match for the South Africans.

ALSO READ: Nedbank Cup’s last 32 details revealed

The South African senior men’s team captain has been reluctant to take credit for his heroics during the tournament. But will accept that his contribution was crucial.

The two sides created a number of opportunities during the match. With a bit of luck in front of goal, the match could have been wrapped up inside 90 minutes.

The game finished at 0-0 and went straight to penalties. After the two sides could not break the deadlock during regulation time, it was left up to Williams to once again step up to the plate and deliver.

THIRD PLACE FINISH FOR BAFANA BAFANA AT THE AFCON 

Williams kept his fifth clean sheet in a single AFCON and in the process broke former goalkeeper Andre Arendse’s record.

Bafana Bafana will return to South Africa in the coming days after a tough campaign that quietly began in January with a training camp in Stellenbosch.

The Premier Soccer League has announced the details for the Nedbank Cup round of 32 matches. This includes dates, venues, and kick-off times for the 2023/24 season.

The competition will commence on Tuesday, 20 February 2024. The last 32 stage will be played over six days, concluding with the last fixture on Sunday, 25 February 2024.

ALSO READ: Erasmus returns as Springboks head coach

The opening clash on Tuesday evening will see Nedbank Cup debutants, NB La Masia, hosting Mamelodi Sundowns at Dobsonville Stadium. Simultaneously, SuperSport United will entertain Cape Town City at Lucas Moripe Stadium. Both matches are scheduled to kick-off at 19h00.

Nedbank Cup's last 32 details revealed
Nedbank Cup Trophy

Wednesday night, 21 February 2024, will also feature two fixtures in the Gauteng Province. In Johannesburg, Highlands Park will face Sekhukhune United, while the University of Pretoria and Cape Town Spurs will engage in a showdown in Tshwane.

AmaZulu FC and Royal AM will lock horns in the much-anticipated KZN Derby at King Zwelithini stadium on Thursday, 22 February 2024. Kick-off is at 19h00.

Two days later, on Friday, Lamontville Golden Arrows and TS Galaxy FC will clash at Mpumalanga Stadium, and Stellenbosch FC will host Pretoria Callies at Danie Craven Stadium. Both fixtures will kick-off at 19h00.

MORE NEDBANK CUP LAST 32 DETAILS REVEALED

A total of nine fixtures will unfold nationwide over the weekend, concluding the round of 32 stage. Notable highlights include the all-SAFA divisions matchups, featuring FC Ravens against Spain FC on Saturday, 24 February 2024, and D’ General versus Madridtas FC on Sunday, 25 February 2024.

Tickets for all round of 32 fixtures will be available at Ticketpro outlets countrywide for R40 each. The PSL will provide further information on ticket availability.

TROTT MOLOTO believes Hugo Broos’ Bafana Bafana will succeed where his own men failed 24 years ago by progressing to the final of the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) via victory over Nigeria on Wednesday evening.

The last coach to earn South Africa a medal at the biennial continental tournament, Moloto has been impressed by the current crop of the senior national team and is confident they will get the better of the Super Eagles in Bouake, Ivory Coast tonight (7pm kick-off).

ALSO READ: Hey Nwabali, remember who pays your salary

“For sure, they will,” Moloto said without hesitation when asked what he thinks the result will be. “Hugo Broos has a very strong team that he has managed to put into a great unit. We have a well-trained and well-prepared team. And I believe the boys will go out there and individually put up their hands and stand tall for their country as a collective. I am not scared of Nigeria for Wednesday’s match.”

And the man who was among the first players from Limpopo to turn professional was not scared of Nigeria back in 2000 when he led Bafana against the Super Eagles in a failed attempt to reach a third successive CAF AFCON final.

“As a team, we had the belief we could beat Nigeria back then. We had a strong team with players playing all over Europe and those who were at home played for the top class and were big name players too. We played very good football and we had beaten another host Ghana in the quarterfinals, so we were confident even though Nigeria were highly-rated and had quality players.”

Ex-Bafana Bafana coach Trott Moloto says South Africa will beat Nigeria
Former Bafana Bafana coach Trott Moloto

ALSO READ: Bafana through to AFCON semi-finals 

A poor start that saw Nigeria take the lead in the opening minute, however, threw the proverbial spanner in the works of Moloto’s well-laid game plan.

“Of course, it becomes very hard when you concede as early as we did and we lost that match because of the unnecessary mistakes we made at the wrong times, not because we were not good enough. And it was not as though Nigeria were much stronger and overpowering us too. Looking back, I believe we really had a good game and were very competitive. We just did not succeed where it mattered most. But that’s the nature of football.”

He feels that Nigeria are in debt to South Africa and is trusting on Ronwen Williams and his troops to exact sweet revenge on behalf of his team for what transpired back in 2000.

TROTT MOLOTO TIPS BAFANA BAFANA TO GET REVENGE AGAINST NIGERIA

“Nigeria owes us big time and they are going to pay. I know that we have a brave captain in Ronwen who will not be scared and will do something great to inspire the team. He leads from the back and reads the game very well. So he will be the one telling his teammates what exactly it is they need to do. And he has an amazing back four in front of him that has shown time and time again that they can compete with everyone,” Moloto said before rattling out the strengths of the back five – inclusive of the goalkeeper – who all play for the club he works for Mamelodi Sundowns and highlighting the individual brilliance of the midfielders and forwards to illustrate the potency that Broos has as his disposal to get the better of Nigeria.

“Hugo Broos has done a great job with this team and I believe we will win,” said the man who won South Africa a bronze medal via a third-place finish back in 2000, the last time Bafana brought home something from the AFCON.

By Matshelane Mamabolo