Team KZN are the undisputed champions of the indigenous games following yet another successful defence of the National Indigenous Games Festival crown. The KwaZulu-Natal team defended the championship title for the 8th consecutive during the week-long games that were held at Seshego stadium in Polokwane on 24 - 28 September. The KZN teams excelled in the majority of the games codes that they participated in such as ncuva, khokho, umlabalaba, amagende, drie-stokkies and juskei.
KZN MEC for Arts, Culture, Sport and Recreation, Bongi Sithole-Moloi applauded the triumphant KZN side for yet another excellent performance at the IGs festival.
“I would like to congratulate Team KZN for once again defending the title for the 8th consecutive time. This is indeed a proud moment for our Government and the people of KwaZulu-Natal. This once again proves that our Province is capable of producing winners in every sport code. This win also gives us more courage to work hard to avail opportunities for our youth to participate in sport and recreation activities so that they remain active and keep away from anti-social behaviours,” said MEC Sithole-Moloi.
Throughout the event, Team KZN showed why they have been champions for such a long time as they were always focused, disciplined, dedicated and hard working whenever they were competing with teams from other provinces.
Wandile Mkhize who bagged a gold medal with his khokho team said the passion they have about the games helps them the most when competing and makes them come up on top whenever they play against other team.
‘’Being part of these games is a very nice experience as I get to interact with players from different provinces who are passionate about the indigenous games especially the game of khokho. This game has taught me a lot about sportsmanship and how to deal with other players in a good way especially the ones that we are competing with,’’ he commented.
Speaking during the closing ceremony of the Games, Sport and Recreation South Africa’s (SRSA) Director General, Alec Moemi who was present throughout the duration of the event, emphasised on the importance of having these games that seek to preserve our culture and heritage.
‘’Our intention is to grow these games as they are the major contributor to heritage and nation building by our sector of sport and recreation. And these games preservation are an indicator of who we are as country. It’s very good to see more and more young people playing indigenous games’’ he said.
Mr Moemi said SRSA intends to turn some IGs codes into professional competition, starting with ingqathu (kgati/rope skipping) in the next two years.