Visiting team triumphs at Thornhill soccer tournament

A soccer team from East London walked away with top honours at the Lukhanyo Memorial Soccer Tournament at Thornhill over the weekend.

The visitors, Future Stars, beat the Jeffreys Bay team Umlilo in a nail-biting final that had to be decided through a penalty shoot-out.

“Congratulations to Future Stars on their victory. They played well throughout the tournament and the win was well deserved,” said tournament founder, Mdodana Kota.

He thanked all the teams that had participated in the tournament and commended them on the excellent sportsmanship that prevailed throughout.

“It makes one proud to be part of the football fraternity,” he said.

The tournament drew wide support from the local community, and the stands were packed with supporters on both Saturday and Sunday.

“We were very pleased with the turn-out, which also included several VIP visitors from elsewhere in the province,” Kota said.

He further thanked Kouga Municipality’s Traffic and Law Enforcement section for speaking to the players and supporters about staying safe on the roads.

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“My son, Lukhanyo, lost his life in a horrible accident near Thornhill in 2016. He was only 15 years old at the time.

“This tournament is a way to remember him and others who have died on the road, while highlighting the importance of driving responsibly to other young people,” he said.

Kouga Municipality’s Community Services Portfolio Councillor, Daniel Benson, commended Kota, his organising committee and the tournament sponsors for arranging the event.

“It is a fun way to drive home an important message.

“It is the second year that the tournament has taken place and we hope that it will grow from strength to strength in the years to come and reach even more young people,” he said.

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