Chief Jerry Nkosi crowned new COPA Coca-Cola champions
A new COPA Coca-Cola® champion was crowned at the King Zwelithini Stadium on Saturday, 21 September as Chief Jerry Nkosi High School lifted the coveted title to conclude what has been a highly entertaining COPA Coca-Cola® National Finals.
The newly crowned champions from Mpumalanga overcame Gauteng’s School of Excellence in a thrilling finale that ended in a 3-2 penalty victory, following a tight 2-2 draw in regulation time.
Mpumalanga were the first to find the back of the net in the early stages of the first half before the School of Excellence levelled matters and went 2-1 up before the end of the first half. As expected, Chief Jerry Nkosi came out more determined in the second half in search of the equalizer, which they eventually found to send the game to penalties and clinch the title in front of the football loving community of Umlazi, who attended in their numbers.
Preceding the final was the third and fourth place play-off which saw Dr Reginald Cingo of Free State edging Limpopo’s Northern Academy 1-0 to claim the bronze medal.
Congratulating the newly crowned champions was Simba Marumo, who alongside Jabulani Mendu as well as Selekedi Mogale, have been travelling across the country with the tournament in search of raw talent for this year’s COPA Coca-Cola® Future Stars camp.
“Congratulations to the newly crowned champions from Mpumalanga. This victory goes to show just how the tournament continues to improve. This is the first time a school from Mpumalanga wins the competition which demonstrates the wonderful work done by Coca-Cola® and SASFA in developing schools’ football,” said Marumo.
After successfully completing the Provincial and National Finals phase, the closing chapter for this year’s COPA Coca-Cola® tournament will be the COPA Coca-Cola® Future Stars camp, which will be held at the High Performance Centre (HPC) in Pretoria between 22 and 28 September.
“What is wonderful about this tournament is how Coca-Cola® goes beyond crowning the champions but makes the effort to holistically develop talent. The COPA Coca-Cola® Future Stars camp will be the closing chapter to the competition, and we are looking forward to imparting knowledge into these boys over the next week,” concluded Marumo.
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