It was all fun and play at Highlands North Boys High School on 26 October when former learners launched their inaugural basketball tournament.
The tournament, which featured other schools from neighbouring areas, was well supported by former learners, professional basketball players, schoolchildren, teachers as well as the community.
Jo Ann Cohen, one of the organisers of the tournament, said this was an initiative by the former learners as part of giving back to the school. “This is a pilot project and the schools will be competing for a floating trophy,” she said.
“We will try to hold it annually at the school.”
Professional basketball player and the owner of Phenoms Basketball Academy, Richard Nta, said he was excited to be part of this initiative. Nta added that this was an opportunity for his academy to continue developing the sport both locally and internationally.
“We do work extensively with schools and it also will afford those who have the interest to continue playing to be recruited and play at a professional level,” said Nta.
“This is a pipeline for growth and skills development for the youngsters who want to further their aspirations to play the sport at a professional level.”
The school’s sports coordinator, Joseph Majia said he was also excited that a new sport had now been introduced to enable the boys another option. He said the usual sports were soccer, cricket and rugby but now with basketball, he hoped that more boys would get involved.
“Our boys now subject themselves to illicit substances, bunk school and sometimes get involved in criminal activities,” he said.
“I’m expecting to see more of them taking advantage of this and play sport, and of course not only basketball but others sports activities in the school.”
The other schools that participated included Marist Brothers, Barnato, Amazing Grace, Alexandra and Glenvista high schools.
Earlier in the day, Bongi Ngema-Zuma, one of the wives of former president Jacob Zuma, paid a courtesy visit to the school.
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