24 September 2019 – Bafana Bafana Team Doctor, Thulani Ngwenya, is in Cairo, Egypt as part of the historic two-day MRI course where medical practitioners are participating in the event aimed at establishing a panel of experts to conduct and supervise MRI related issues.

With age cheating sometimes being a thorn in competitions, the workshop is about MRI for age determination, especially for the U-17 players.

It is believed that this gathering could get closer to curbing age cheating on the continent.

Dr Thulani Ngwenya, who is also the Chief Medical Officer of the South African Football Association (SAFA), believes this is a step in the right direction.

“It’s important for me and South Africa because it makes me to be directly involved and contribute towards finding a solution for age cheating because it has been a big problem over years on the continent,” said Dr Ngwenya.

“From this course, we are hoping to come up with better ways of addressing the issue of age cheating because the MRI can give false-positive or false-negative results – depending on ethnicity, Nutrition, Genes and environmental factors. I believe from here we will be responsible to go around the continent to oversee all the scans done by the National teams for age determination – for instance the next U17 COSAFA tournament, to be held in Malawi in October, it is compulsory to do the MRI as it is a prerequisite for the tournament.

The two-day course, which started on Monday, ends today (Tuesday, 24 September.