Football Report – Grey College Tournament

BY CRAIG HATCHES - OCTOBER 24, 2016

The beautiful game connects College Boys

Overstated as it can sound, football is more than a game for many of us—it’s a common language, a vital escape, a way to turn strangers into friends, and the simplest, most reliable source of joy that we know.

These feelings associated with football know no culture. Wherever we go, no matter the corner of the map, we know there’s a game to be found and memories to be made with people who feel the exact same way about the sport as we do.

For 18 College boys, two coaches and one driver, these emotions and feelings became real at the 2016 Grey College Football Tournament.

By now, you almost certainly know the story.

If you don’t, it goes something like this: The St Andrew’s Football Club, the unfancied, fearless College boys —hailing from a city known less for winning football trophies and more for Arts, Culture and Rugby—travelled to Bloemfontein to participate in one of the toughest schoolboy football tournaments in Bloemfontein.

It’s impossible not to sound platitudinous about this, particularly after a season’s worth of “Do You Believe in Miracles?” think pieces, but the fact is that what 18 St Andrew’s College boys achieved is truly unbelievable. With an average age of 15 and nine months in an U19 Tournament, winning the tournament was not the primary objective. Wining our first match was… we managed a draw... Nonetheless, the development of all the individuals and the team was something incredible to witness. The boys never gave up, and they played every match like it was their last. After 420 minutes of football in 4 days, the boys left Grey College with their heads held high.

There were many highlights and it is extremely difficult to single out one particular event. But to mention a few, Kieron Baart’s performance in goal was second to none, Tom More’s 2 goals (one of either foot) versus Northwood was simply incredible, Thabo Sifumba and Zakdok Makani playing almost every second of the 420 minutes, James Flower playing left-back as a 14-year-old , Joshua Million playing central defender as a junior, Tony Rubombora and Oliver Hoard’s desire to score, Tao Varty for his leadership of the junior boys, Francis Christie for being Francis Christie… the list can go on forever.

Personally, I would like to thank Mr William Donkin for his commitment to the team and his noticeable passion for football. He was a great coach and leader for our boys and I thank him for being willing to be part of this amazing process.

The future of football at College looks bright. NEC ASPERRA TERRENT