UJ captain Deancke Rohde has hung up her boots, officially announcing her retirement as a player for the UJ netball squad. Rohde captained the Auckland Park side under the leadership of coach Leigh-Ann Zackey-Smal to secure a sixth place finish in their 2016 Varsity Netball campaign.
Furthermore, Rohde has transitioned from student to player to represent her respective institution in the prestigious challenge and displayed the true essence of balancing sports and education as she completes her Honours in Sports Science.
Rohde said completing her honours and playing with the team all came down to balancing and time management.
“I’m very grateful to the lecturers and UJ as whole as they supported me through all my netball commitments.”
The lanky goal-shooter said she intends to continue working with UJ in a more technical role for the team.
“I have shadowed our video analyst. I am looking to do my internship at UJ and I would really love to do netball behind-the-scenes, hopefully in a coaching position.”
Rohde said she is lucky to have a strong support system back home as they understood how important netball is to her.
“I’ve got a lot of support from my loved ones and they are understanding because netball is my passion and I’m really blessed to have a family who knows that.”
Rohde adds there is a bittersweet element to her leaving as she has gone through a lot of good moments with the team.
“There’s a negative and positive side to it all. I have given a lot of time to netball and although I would have liked to go further, I think it’s time I moved on. I currently coach the King David High School open team and hopefully I can get into a more serious coaching position for one of the netball squads.”
By Liziwe Mbha