Soccer is more than a sport or a mere pastime. It is a way of life which captivates players and scores of fans.
As Bill Shankly, a Scottish soccer player and one-time manager of Liverpool FC, said, “Some people think football is a matter of life and death. I assure you, it is much more serious than that.”
On Saturday, September 14, a staggering 48 soccer teams descended onto Paradise Sports Grounds. Their mission to participate in the 16 Annual Muslim Youth Organisation (MYO) Seven-A-Side Soccer Tournament.
An event which sees soccer enthusiast from Johannesburg, Escourt, Ladysmith, Ermelo, Dundee, Vryheid, Volksrust, Madadeni and Newcastle compete against each other for the love of the sport.
Ensuring fair play, the tournament saw teams divided into age groups, u/9, u/11, u/13, u/15 and u/17 teams.
As the teams took to the grounds, spectators cheering on their favourite teams, Shabir Ismail, one of the day’s organisers, emphasised the event had one major purpose. “It is to bring youngsters of all ages, races and religion together and see them enjoy a day of soccer, highlighting the importance of clean living.”
Ismail further thanked the Almighty, the community of Newcastle and all those who involved in the day for ensuring the event was a major success.
“When we first started the MYO Seven-A- Soccer Tournament, there were only 12 teams and we are now seeing 46 teams taking part.”
The winners of the day are:
While the teams put on an excellent display of soccer, the individual players were also commended for their efforts.
In the u/9 division, the following players were awarded for their time on the field:
Golden Glove: Moosa Badat from An Noor.
The Golden Booth: Noordeen Kauma from Siraat Ul Haq.
Most Sporting Player: Mohammed Tinkouries from ICN.
In the u/11 division, the following players were awarded:
Golden Glove: Umar Ahmed from Newcastle United
Golden Booth: Yusuf Kareem from ICN
Most Sporting Player: Cassim Fundi from Siraatul Haq
In the u/13 division, the following players were recognised for their efforts:
Golden Glove: Kian Gabriel Thompson from Al Huda
Golden Booth: Hamza Msibi of Al Kawthar
Most Sporting Player: Nadeem Habim from Tezza
The players from the u/15 who were awarded for their efforts are:
Golden Glove Ebrahim Langa from Al Ansaar
Golden Booth: Shafiq Hlope of Al Ansaar
Most Sporting Player: Ebrahim Madi from Madadeni Maktab
The following players from the u/17 division were acknowledged for their stellar performance:
Golden Glove: Fanafuthi Xaba from Mujahideen
Golden Booth: Vasilis Pornalis from Al Ahly
Most Sporting Player: Thabo Dlamini From Vryheid.
Congratulations to the winning teams and the players for their excellent performance on the soccer field.