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Rhodes VC shines as soccer coach

Date Released: Mon, 29 July 2013 11:59 +0200

It was an unusual sight last Saturday afternoon as Rhodes University ViceChancellor Saleem Badat ran around Prospect Field with a ball.

He was coaching soccer to a group of children from the Sakhulutsha Soccer Development Project. Although the VC's coaching session continued longer than 67 minutes, it was one of his contributions for Mandela Day.

The coaching session was one of more than 70 events organised for Rhodes University Community Engagement for its Trading Live Mandela Day event. When director of Community Engagement Diana Hornby challenged the Rhodes community to get involved in the Trading Live for Mandela Day, Badat opted to coach soccer.

Badat has an English Football Association qualification to teach U14s. He obtained it while completing his PhD at York University. Both Badat's sons played soccer. The coach approached Badat and asked him to get involved, so when a coaching course was offered, Badat took the opportunity.

Coaching the players on Saturday, Badat said it was gratifying to see children grow as players. "It's rewarding to work with kids who don't start off with much skill," he said afterwards. Badat spent his time teaching the players basic skills, such as ball-passing. Badat was impressed with some of the players from his group.

Some had technique, he said, while others didn't know the basics. Badat said he'd enjoyed working with the children and aimed to get involved with the group every week. Rhodes University Vice-Chancellor Saleem Badat discusses soccer techniques with a group of children from the Sakhulutsha Soccer Development Project at the university's Prospect Field last weekend.

He spent the afternoon coaching the children as part of his contribution to Mandela Day in Rhodes University Community Engagement's Trading Live for Mandela Day project last week.

Photo and Article by: Stephen Penney

Article Source: Grocotts Mail