Zwelithini Stadium, Durban, on Wednesday morning, though only 17 of the original
complement of 18 teams will now contest the annual national schools championship.
One of the Free State qualifiers, Setjhabasemaketse Secondary School, was summarily
expelled from the tournament today, two days into the tournament, on account of
attempting to field a player who is not a registered pupil at the school, a flagrant
contravention of Section 3.1 of the official tournament rules, which requires all
participants to be full time day scholars at their respective schools.
“It was discovered during one of the many random checks that take place during the
tournament. A certain pupil could not answer some of the simple questions related
to the school he purported to attend,” said Isaac Arendse, National Technical
Director of SASFA. “At a disciplinary hearing on Thursday, the team was
disqualified and the school forfeited all points. The player and coach in question
were sent home”.
“SASFA has a zero tolerance policy towards any form of cheating, as it denies
opportunities to legitimate participants, as well as affording an unfair advantage
to the dishonest team,” he added.
For logistical reasons the remaining members of the Setjhabasemaketse Secondary
School contingent will stay on in Durban as spectators.
Metropolitan sponsorship manager, Jennifer Padayachee endorsed SASFA’s stance: “This
event is one of the cornerstones of youth development football in the country. The
importance of integrity and honesty cannot be overstated and any transgressions of
these principles will be dealt with in the strongest possible terms. However, this
incident should not have an overall bearing on the remainder of the tournament,
which we anticipate will be contested in the finest sporting spirit.”
The matter has been referred to both SAFA and the Department of Education, which
could yield further consequences for the offenders.
The finals of the Metropolitan SASFA Under-16 Cup will be played tomorrow at the. Kick-off is at 6pm.