Bound by an unshakeable spirit, the SPAR NMMU-Madibaz netball team are ready for their biggest Varsity Netball challenge when they tackle University of Pretoria (Tuks) in the semifinals in Pretoria on Monday.
Coach Lana Krige said they would not underestimate the task ahead of them against the log leaders, but the players were determined to prove their credentials.
After setting themselves the target of ending at least fifth in this year’s tournament, the Madibaz exceeded that with a crucial victory over NWU-Pukke last month to finish fourth on the round-robin log, securing a spot in the playoffs.
Krige is banking on the strong spirit they have created to give them a chance against the unbeaten Tuks outfit.
Despite losing to the Pretoria team in the round-robin section, she said they were excited about meeting their highly rated opponents again.
“We played a Tuks side virtually at full strength and that is an advantage because the girls now know what to expect and we look forward to the challenge,” Krige said.
“We know it’s going to be extremely tough and everything must be right for us to have a chance, but in our previous game we matched them for long periods and were only really outplayed in the power play.”
In that power play, Tuks scored 16 goals without reply to take control of a match which had been hard-fought until that stage.
She said they had been more successful in the power play against NWU-Pukke and it would be important to display the same sort of intensity against Tuks.
“We have been building for a long time, trying to get the girls to play at that intensity for a longer time in our matches. “The theme of our match against Pukke [which they won 38-34] was to stay in the game as long as possible.”
Krige said the camaraderie they had built this season was the reason behind much of their success. “The big thing is building a team,” she said.
“We don’t force any friendships, but management have handled everything brilliantly. “We have worked to make sure there are no side issues to distract the players and from that point of view we have developed into a very happy camp.”
While they had set a goal of ending fifth, they were now eager for further success, she said.
“We wanted at least fifth and would have been disappointed with sixth, but as soon as you achieve something a different goal sets in and now we don’t really just want to end fourth.”
“We know we have a tough match ahead, but we also know that on the day anything can happen.”
Madibaz Sport netball manager Theresa le Roux said they were extremely proud of what the team had achieved.
“At one stage, they looked to be fighting it out for fifth and sixth place, but they came through with a great win over Pukke.”
“We are extremely happy that they have qualified for the playoffs.”
The last time the Madibaz reached the semis was in 2012, when they ended third.
Hlengiwe Ndlovu is currently working on a thesis towards her PHD at the University of the Witwatersrand. She is also one of three women who took off their bras during a #FeesMustFall protest on Tuesday‚ October 4‚ saying they were tired of being brutalised.
In an interview with the Northcliff Melville Times she explained their main objective was to stop police discharging stun grenades to disperse students.
“The narrative that appeared on TV changed that particular moment. If you see a woman stripping‚ it means that it is a broader societal problem in terms of violence‚” she said.
“The moment that we stepped into the protest‚ because as much we were displaying the intolerance of violence‚ at the same time‚ it was a form of resistance to say the very same woman’s body is capable of ceasing fire and no one from national or local government could stop it‚” she told the newspaper.
“It’s for free education. Stop shooting us‚ comrades. Cease fire‚ comrades. It’s for free education‚” they were heard chanting in a video posted on Twitter by @LirandzuThemba.
Ndlovu also talked about her journey from orphan to factory worker‚ and currently a senior student at one of South Africa’s top universities where she is completing her thesis towards her PhD.
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To undertand Hlaudi Motsoeneng’s peculiar management style at SABC, you need to go back to 2003 when he assumed the role of current affairs executive producer at Lesedi FM.
A buried internal audit report from the same year had raised concern about his qualifications, casting doubt over whether he owned the matric certificate he claimed to possess when the corporation hired him in 1992.
The audit report was resurrected in 2006 during a probe ordered by then head of news, Snuki Zikalala.
This investigation was sparked by staff complaints against Motsoeneng, with several misconduct allegations surfacing.
They led to his dismissal, but what followed was an epic battle to have the prodigal prince restored to his post. It happened with the same zeal with which Motsoeneng’s stooges have recently gone about having him reinstated as de facto chief.
Back then his arch-defender was former CEO Dali Mpofu, who fell out with Zikalala spectacularly in 2008, right around the time the Polokwane putsch was under way. Motsoeneng had already nailed his colours to the mast of President Jacob Zuma.
With hindsight, it is no surprise that he was subsequently reinstated.
Since then, as the soap opera that is the state broadcaster has rolled on, SABC boards and chief executives have come and gone as the winds of political expediency were whipped up. Only Motsoeneng has survived the tumult. In fact, he’s positively thrived, which explains his uncontrollable narcissism.
In parliament, on Wednesday, the latest episode in this saga unfolded. As yet another SABC board collapsed, under the resignations of two non-executives, Motsoeneng was on hand to watch it all.
Never mind he is the architect of the farce. The man has no shame. But he has been here before. He knows the terrain and has escaped the factional contests that have leeched the lifeblood from the broadcaster.
The Broadcasting Act commits the state to a “South African broadcasting system . . . owned and controlled by South Africans”. For that to be true, Motsoeneng must go.
The ANC, his erstwhile patron, can redeem itself somewhat in this regard with ongoing petitions for his removal. It would be small recompense for the blight it has visited upon the SABC and the nation.
Gwede Mantashe, addressing a meeting reflecting on this year’s local government elections, asked for help, saying: “When you invite us, don’t tell us what we want to hear. Give us honest feedback; we don’t want praise singers because praise singers accompany you to a river full of crocodiles. Tell us to change direction because there are crocodiles there.”
Well, for starters, we have told you over and over to get rid of Zuma. What value has he or is he adding to the ANC or the country? None!
The corruption is beginning to implode – the SABC is first, with SAA and others following shortly.
The varsity situation is critical and getting out of control, Blade Nzimande putting the ball squarely into the hands of the universities, leaving them to cope with protesting and unlawful students.
What about the majority of students wanting to go back and complete the year? I am quite sure the protesters (those who are genuine students and not just hangers-on) know that in all probability they will not be able to pass at the end of the year, so why not bring the whole system down.
Where is the leadership from Zuma – is he hiding in his bunker at Nkandla? Now we know why it was needed.
Even Derick Galloway (no relative) appears to be singing from a new hymn sheet, by the tone of his last letter to The Herald.
Moore, Ackermann step in to shore up batting
The Warriors find themselves slightly on the back foot but resisting well after the second day’s play of their Sunfoil Series cricket match against the Hollywoodbets Dolphins at Buffalo Park in East London yesterday.
At stumps, the home franchise was on 104 for the loss of one wicket, trailing the Dolphins by 374 runs.
The Dolphins scored a massive 478 all out in their first innings and were dismissed shortly before the tea interval, by which time they had already claimed a wicket.
Warriors opener Michael Price was clean-bowled by Dolphins speedster Craig Alexander on two when the total was four.
But then two relatively young batsmen, opener Eddie Moore and No 3 Colin Ackermann, came together and they proceeded to bat with flair mixed with caution.
Ackermann started off at great pace – his first four scoring strokes were boundaries – and before long had outstripped Moore.
At stumps, Moore was on 46 off 132 balls with five boundaries and Ackermann had advanced to 56 off 122 balls, also with five fours. Both showed maturity beyond their years and defended grimly when necessary but were also quick to dispatch any loose deliveries.
Earlier in the day, the Dolphins resumed their innings on 281 for five wickets, with Khaya Zondo on three and Dolphins skipper Morne van Wyk yet to open his account after facing three balls late on Wednesday when bad light brought play to an early end.
The two started slowly in the face of some accurate and hostile bowling from Warriors fast bowlers Andrew Birch and Basheer-Dean Walters and it was Birch who made the initial breakthrough at 313 when he got a ball to jag back and trap Van Wyk in front for an LBW verdict.
Van Wyk scored a patient – for him – 19 off 33 balls with three boundaries.
Thereafter Zondo and the lower order of the Dolphins fired on all cylinders, with Keshav Maharaj, in particular, in attacking mood.
Zondo went to his half-century with 10 fours and was eventually out for an excellent 81 scored off 150 balls with 13 fours.
During the first hour’s play, Zondo had punished Warriors medium-pacer Sisanda Magala unmercifully, striking him for three fours in one over – two beautiful cover drives and an exquisite on-drive through mid-wicket – but Magala had his revenge when Zondo offered a catch to Warriors skipper Simon Harmer which was gratefully accepted.
Maharaj, meanwhile, continued to bat in an attacking vein, and he took his score to 72 off only 71 balls, smashing four sixes and seven fours in a most entertaining innings which really took the stuffing out of the Warriors bowling attack.
For the Warriors, Walters finished with the admirable figures of 4-72 off 25.3 overs and Birch 3-83 in 28 overs.
Magala captured 2-82 and the other successful bowler was allounder Jerry Nqolo who had dismissed opener Sarel Erwee in his first over shortly after lunch on the opening day.
International spinner Harmer had no luck, conceding 124 runs off 32 overs while gaining no assistance from the prevailing conditions.
For the Warriors batsmen, there is still plenty of work to be done.
They will need to consolidate early and then seek valuable batting bonus points.
Thousands of jobs to be created through multi-billion rand IDZ investment
A new mega-project that will create thousands of jobs at the Coega Industrial Development Zone (IDZ) has been announced.
It comprises a multibillionrand power station using gas as part of the government’s strategy to make the Eastern Cape a national energy centre.
The announcement was made by the Department of Energy this week at the South African Gas Options Conference in Cape Town.
Officials said the 1 000MW plant would create 8 400 jobs during the construction phase and 200 permanent jobs when operations began.
No timing was given for the start and finish of the project, which was described as requiring a multibillion-rand investment.
IDZ spokesman Simlindile Manqina said the job tally was based on research carried out by the provincial government.
Coega Development Corporation (CDC) energy projects business development manager Sandisiwe Ncemane said: “This project will allow the IDZ to become a diverse energy user, in conjunction with building the local energy sector.
“The project will also serve as a significant source of socioeconomic growth.”
Of other benefits, Ncemane said: “The implementation of this project will allow greater energy independence, which will boost South Africa’s gross domestic product and help create direct and indirect jobs.”
The CDC had already proved its readiness for gas-to-power programmes and had established the IDZ as the ideal location for both renewable and conventional energy, he said.
In the build-up to the project’s approval, the corporation had conducted a pre-feasibility study under the guidance of the Department of Energy Affairs and this had confirmed the suitability and viability of a power station using gas to be located at the IDZ.
The Coega IDZ is already home to the 342MW Dedisa Peaking Power Plant (PPP), designed for conversion to being operated by gas. The PPP began operations last year.
Based on Eskom figures, 1 000MW can provide power for the equivalent of 65 000 homes. Provincial Economic Development, Environmental Affairs and Tourism MEC Sakhumzi Somyo said the decision to build the power station was in line with the Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP) which included using gas as one of the pillars for the reindustrialisation of the provincial economy.
It also set the scene for the Eastern Cape becoming a dynamic hub for the gas services sector.
Somyo believed the Coega IDZ was the perfect gateway for the gas industry as it had the newest port in the country at Ngqura, and was designed to easily accommodate a liquid petroleum gas project.
The MEC said: “Coega has shown its ability to support and manage mega-projects, ensuring they are delivered on time, at the right quality, within budget and in a way that realises government’s socioeconomic objectives.”
Chippa United’s Diski team will be looking to bounce back from their 2-0 defeat against Bidvest Wits when they play Orlando Pirates at the Kanyamazane Stadium tomorrow (kickoff 1pm).
The young Chilli Boys have recorded only four points from the three games played so far.
They have one win, a draw and a loss.
Chippa development coach Glen Minnie said he had seen a huge improvement in his team from last year, looking at the matches they had played so far.
He said, however, there was still room for improvement.
“We are definitely planning to bounce back,”Minnie said.
“We lost to Wits and I do not like to go into a break when we have lost, because you are always sitting anxiously saying you need to correct that loss and bring the confidence back. ”
“A game like the Pirates one is motivation itself and the boys are really looking forward to it. I know we will be much more organised.”
The coach said in order to win against the Soweto giants his striking force needed to be sharpened as many scoring opportunities were going to waste.
He said the decision-making in front of the posts was not up to scratch.
“We create a lot of chances but we just need to put them away.”
“Even against Wits we had our chances to win the game, but the chances that we missed cost us. ”
“You can’t miss some balls when their goalkeeper is not even in the right position and kick the ball over the bar. “But we have been working really hard and have done some excises to correct that.”
Fifa president Gianni Infantino confirmed yesterday that he backed expanding the World Cup to 48 teams, giving more of a chance to more teams.
Infantino believes a fundamental point for an expanded finals would be to have it co-hosted by several countries.
He also declared himself quite happy and confident for the future of the scandal-tainted world governing body of football. “Nobody is perfect, I am the last to be. But I don’t steal, I don’t profit, I don’t cheat and I don’t want to allow anyone in this organisation to do so,” he said.
Infantino, 46, succeeded the disgraced Sepp Blatter at the head of Fifa, and is determined to stamp his own authority on the job as president and on the spor t’s future.
He had already suggested he would be in favour of a 40-team World Cup, up from the current 32.
“We can consider a World Cup of 48 teams which would in fact be a 32-team format because we have seen the ideal format is 32 teams,” he explained.
“The idea would be that the best 16 teams in qualifying would qualify directly for the group phase.”
He confirmed that the 32 other teams would dispute a playoff round from which the winners would enter the next stage to join the other 16 countries.
“This gives more chances for more teams. Furthermore, there would be no impact on the football calendar because these playoff matches would be played instead of friendlies before the World Cup.”
“From the point of view of the promotion of football, there would be 16 ‘finals’ before the real start of the group phase, real matches taking place to determine the 16 teams.”
Swiss-Italian lawyer Infantino said the projected increase to 48 teams was “certainly going to be discussed on October 13 and 14 when the next Fifa council meets”.
“It’s an idea, just as the World Cup with 40 teams is already on the table with groups of four or five teams.”
The suggestion to widen the World Cup to 48 countries is bound to generate mixed emotions.
This year’s European Championship in France featured 24 teams in a month-long tournament with just eight countries being eliminated at the end of the first stage.
Many argued that the format caused quality to be watered down; others were buoyed by seeing the likes of Wales make the semifinals while Iceland stunned England on their way to the quarterfinals.
Away from a new-look World Cup, Infantino said he was also committed to forging a fresh and clean Fifa after a series of corruption scandals since last May.
Infantino, who was the right-hand man of suspended Michel Platini in his Uefa career, believes he has the desire and the personnel to put Fifa’s dark days behind them.
He underlined the importance of the work “of the new general secretary Fatma Samoura, the development of women’s football and the integration of former players like Zvonimir Boban, assistant secretary- general, and Marco van Basten in the area of technical development”.
Edcon plans to increase its workforce by almost 7% and slash prices as South Africa’s largest clothing retailer launches a recovery plan following the exit of US private equity firm Bain Capital Partners.
The owner of the Edgars and Jet chains was seeking to lure customers back to its stores with more than 2 000 new staff specifically trained in the clothing ranges in their departments, chief executive Bernie Brookes said.
The move will help to undo the effect of job cuts made by Edcon as it struggled under a debt burden caused by Bain’s R25-billion purchase in 2007.
“We must be the only valueadded department store in the world where you self-serve shoes, when what you really want is somebody to come and fit them and make sure they are the right size,” Brookes said.
“I expect by the time we finish we will end up putting 2 500 people back into the stores to provide good customer service.”
About a fifth of those could come from stores Edcon was closing, he said, while the rest would be hired.
Brookes is embarking on a four-year turnaround plan after Bain handed ownership of Edcon to creditors, including Franklin Templeton of the US, in a debt-for-equity swap, reducing the debt burden to R6-billion from R26.7-billion.
The 87-year-old retailer, which employs about 30 000 people outside peak season, had seen sales decline in its more than 1 500 stores while managing the business largely to make debt repayments, Brookes said.
The company would also cut prices and accept a lower profit margin on clothing to increase sales and compete in a market toughened by the entry of overseas retailers such as Hennes & Mauritz and Inditexowned Zara, Brookes said.
Brookes joined Edcon a year ago, after previously running Melbourne-based department store Myer.
South African consumer confidence has been hurt by an unemployment rate of 27% while economic growth is expected to slow to 0.1% this year, according to the IMF.
Retail sales grew at the slowest pace in more than two years in July, and Edcon reported an 8.1% drop in first-quarter sales to R6-billion.
The Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, under the leadership of Minister Des van Rooyen‚ reflected multimillion-rands worth of irregular expenditure – including a bizarre 2 581.94% increase in expenditure on consumables‚ DA MP Kevin Mileham said yesterday.
The department’s audit opinion wilted from an unqualified opinion in the 2014-15 financial year‚ to a qualified audit opinion in this financial year.
“Since assuming office in December‚ subsequent to being hired and fired as Finance Minister over a weekend‚ Minister Van Rooyen has presided over an increasingly mismanaged department‚” Mileham said.
The department had become increasingly dysfunctional and was failing to set the example for local governments in cost containment and responsible spending, he said.
In this financial year‚ the department has seen its current year irregular expenditure increase by 184% – from R155 375 000 in the 2014-15 year‚ to R442 458 000.
The department’s total expenditure hiked by almost 15%‚ from just more than R59-billion in 2014-15 to more than R68-billion this year.
- Employee compensation and salaries and wages both rose 10% and 9% respectively;
- Goods and services increased 44.94%‚ an increase of R763 550 000;
- Spending on contractors rose 42.89%‚ up R544 498 000;
- Agency and support-outsourced services jumped by 1 122.94%‚ up R6 805 000; and
- Spending on consumable supplies increased 2 581.94%, from R4 558 000 to R122 243 000 .
Have you tried: Diving with Sharks?