12 July 2019 – Competitive, high-octane and always memorable. These are just a few of the terms that aptly describe the KwaZulu-Natal stream of the respected Sasol Women’s League.
Sunflower WFC have stormed ahead with 11 wins from as many games and are leading the pack with lethal attacking players and a super tight defence. However, hot on their heels are the ultra-disciplined Lindelani Ladies, who a mere six points adrift with a game in hand.
The Durban Central LFA (Local Football Association) team, who represent the eThekwini region and finished as runners-up last season, are gunning for the title this time around and a spot in the national league. Safa.net managed to squeeze in a quick chat with club coach and Chairman Mr Nathi Vilakazi. He shared his thoughts on the club that he founded in 2001.
“We had a turbulent pre-season as six of our top players left. Some had schooling commitments and others found jobs. We recruited and worked hard though,” stated Vilakazi.
Commenting on his thoughts on the season thus far, the coach emphasized fitness as a key component to success.
“We have started well but women’s soccer is different to the men’s game and the one aspect you have to stress on is physical fitness. I push the girls to work on this particular facet in order to properly hone their talent. You also need to raise their spirits and leave them free to express themselves. We train five days a week to provide these young girls with as much practice and experience as possible. Tactical and technical aspects also come into play.”
However, as with other Sasol teams, there are indeed a few challenges to be overcome.
“Finances are tight. From petrol to getting the girls to the games to basic equipment. But we keep pushing. Sponsors would be welcomed. I do it for the love of the game though,” added the coach.
On a brighter note, the charismatic boss provided a few exciting names to look out for i.e. potential Banyana Banyana stars.
“We have the talent! Some have been unlucky in terms of selection but our captain Zethembiso Vilakazi made it to the U17 squad and scored our only goal in the World Cup in Uruguay. Our top scorer Londeka Gumede is a deadly attacker and striker Khanyisile Sokela is a talent of note. Faya Mandisa, our most experienced star, is also someone to keep an eye on,” he said.
The owner also implored fans to keep supporting the club as they are trying their best. Sitting comfortably in second place, it will come as no surprize if the Durban outfit go all the way this time.
The team’s next game is on Sunday, 14 July at John Doris Stadium against mid-table Barcelona FC at 13h00.