3 August 2017 – Tumelo Ndaba’s victory in the SAB U21 National Championships has not only ended Gauteng’s title drought but also put him out there as one of the most promising young coaches in the country.
His pedigree alone as a championship winning coach is getting bigger and better. Apart from guiding Gauteng to victory, Ndaba also won the Burger King 19 tournament with Gauteng last year.
He also coached Gauteng school Rosina Sedibane to the title in a Nike U15 tournament, getting a chance to go coach his young side at a global show-piece in Manchester, England.
The 31-year-old from Kagiso, who has a CAF A License is not about claiming credit, as he feels it takes more than one tactician to put together a winning team.
“You must always remain humble in this kinds of situation because the road is long and there is still a lot of learning to be done. I have had the pleasure of coaching very good players and I am also assisted by quality coaches who think beyond just the field,” Ndaba said.
“This is why a whole lot of my planning involves understanding my players, getting the best out of them and allowing them to have fun while winning matches. That has been the secret. We work on having a family set up, then work on the mentality, and in the end, have them approaching matches and tournament as people who are capable of going all the way. That is way before we talk tactics,” the young coach said.
It was his calm demeanor and calculated nature that caught all the attention when Gauteng came back from two goals down to lead 3-2 against USSA Football during the final in Soweto recently, eventually winning the match 4-1 on penalties.
Ndaba credits that to not giving up and keeping the faith that something can always happen as long as there are minutes on the clock.
“You cannot afford to give up. That is what we had to do. There was a lot to play for and it is important at the players’ age that if there is still time on the clock and we can get on the ball, then a fightback is possible. I am proud of how the boys came back. I know that for them, the lesson will stay on forever even when they are at the highest level,” Gauteng coach said.
“It will teach them to always be competitive. And I told them when we got there that the SAB tournament is a highly competitive tournament that demands a lot from players,” Ndaba said.
Ndaba is currently part of the coaching staff at the SuperSport United development.