The UCT team came into this year´s Varisty Netball competition with a whole new squad of ladies. Long gone is the label of “acquaintance” between this team’s members though, as they have truly grown into a little family of their own.
The ladies are a diverse family with different backgrounds, both academically and personally, but the dynamic mesh they are is sensational. When they started out, some of them had already been on the team for a few years, but many were also new. The adjustment seemed to be an easy transition for the team despite this; and they can now safely describe having made true friendships along the way, that they are sure will last long after the end of their season together.
Besides the actual players, other members of the ‘family’ which cannot be left out, are of course the management: coach Sue Schooling, assistant coach Theo, manager Lushinka and biokinetist Stephen. Schooling, who was the captain of the Maties team in her day, is not only an inspiration as a netball player, but also as the mother figure for the team. From being someone easy to open up to, to even painting the players´ nails the distinct UCT-blue before games, coach Sue is a keeper!
One of the opportunities the Varsity Netball competition provides each squad, is the chance to travel to venues across the country for games. From Cape Town to Johannesburg, the UCT squad has received the opportunity to see a bit more of South Africa, and they have a few stories to tell from their travels.
UCT usually travel by airplane to their destinations in other cities. One of the best parts of these flights? The wait. Yes, you read correctly, the wait at the airport provides the ideal opportunity for UCT, who are a team that love to make their own fun and games, to do just this. One of the destinations traveled to is NMMU, in Port Elizabeth, where the team experienced a bit of the Windy City. The team were given vouchers for Wimpy and got to spend a bit of time chilling as a squad between the games. Here they shared stories of their lives, helped each other with their studies (what a dedicated bunch) or just had fun left, right and centre.
One of the highlights of their travels has to be the local games though, especially the ones in Stellenbosch. These allow the team a long busride from UCT´s lower campus to the university town of Stellenbosch. These rides are not a tedious affair for this group of ladies. Not only is there sharing of great snacks in the true spirit of ‘padkos’, but also the sharing of great jokes that up their spirits long before they set foot on Maties territory.
Another thing the team enjoys, is poking fun at the often awkward (in their eyes) action-pictures taken of themselves at games. These pics will be forwarded to Micaela Peters, UCT goal attacker, who is known as the one who keeps the team´s spirits up with her key sense of humour. Peters is apparently quite the expert at making memes of these pics which then get shared on their team WhatsApp group, leaving everyone in stitches. And as the medical students on the team would surely say, laughter is the best medicine and UCT seem to have tons of it!
By Jessie Leverzencie