Sunday, 28 April 2019

SCHOOL'S SA TRIP FROM HELL


THE aftermath of the Prince Edward tour has had a lot to unpack. It was a truly humbling and eye opening rugby excursion which almost ended in tragedy.

Their bus was involved in an accident some 30km out of Polokwane, on their way from Johannesburg.

And the man right at the centre of it all, Tawanda Jimu, has since opened up on the experiences of Tigers’ trip to Johannesburg for the St Stithians College Sports Festival.

Jimu travelled with the team as Tiger’s team manager, the School’s Head of Delegation and Sports Master.

He also had a front seat view of the accident that had parents, and countrymen alike, in a state of frenzy and panic last Tuesday night.

“Where do I start? I literally saw the hand of God throughout the debacle,” recounts the PE Sports Master 

“We were some 30km or so outside of Polokwane and as you might know that Johannesburg road has a lot of ramps and hills. We were going downhill, when suddenly we saw this BMW swirling in road.

“The car burst its tyre and the driver lost control and started veering towards us. Luckily, we managed to avoid the full impact of the car when it hit us,” he said.

Once off the road, the car caught fire, Jimu and members of the technical team assisted occupants in the car.

“I was right up front with other members of the technical team when the car hit us.

“My immediate thought was on the kids on the bus, and once we found out they were safe and uninjured, we went to assist the passengers in the BMW, a couple and their two kids,” he said.

Aside the accident, Jimu hailed the Johannesburg Festival which he saw as an opportunity for his boys to assess their progress. 

“First of all, festivals like these are always welcome, especially during the pre-season, as they give us an opportunity to assess and gauge both our progress and standing in terms of Schools rugby.

“And with that in mind, I would say it was a success; we went as underdogs, came up against top schools in Africa and the boys performed really well.

“Obviously, results didn’t go our way, winning one game against the Parktown Boys (28-19), but it wasn’t just about winning but learning,” he said.

On the lessons learnt, Jimu said: “We are still a lagging behind in terms of sports science, preparations and skills.

“We lost most of our games due to a lack of conditioning, and we as coaches don’t put enough resources and energy into monitoring and assessing the fitness levels.

“Until such a time, coaches and schools start taking more holistic approaches to sport, we will always lag behind,” he said.

Tigers results at a glance

Prince Edward 12-48 St Stithians 

Parktown Boys 19-28 Prince Edward

Prince Edward 14-34 SACS



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