Kiara, second from left in front row.
DUE to an injury she played just one and a half matches during a national tournament, yet still made such an impression on the selectors that she was included in the South African Girls Hockey team.
Kiara, a United Through Sport Senior School of Excellence beneficiary who is currently in Grade 10 at Alexander Road High School in Nelson Mandela Bay, was selected to the South African Under 17 High Performance Training Squad following the National Under 18 Hockey Tournament recently, where she represented the Eastern Province Under 18-A team.
Great was her disappointment when her hand got fractured on the very first day of the tournament, after playing just one and a half games of hockey. “I got injured when one of my teammates accidentally hit me. I had to wear a brace for 4 weeks. I expected to just go home after the nationals and had to watch the rest of the games on the side-line.”
“I was really happy when I heard that I still made the South African team,” Kiara said.
The High-Performance Training Squad continued after the national tournament and the selected girls practiced stick work, one-on-ones, running and fitness. “I made a lot of new friends and despite my injury, I learnt a lot during the training squad, especially from the other players,” Kiara said.
Known for her perseverance and grit, Kiara is a star on the sports field where she plays for her school's First Hockey Team. Her goal is to make the Under 18 Girls Hockey team next year to represent the Eastern Cape, and we will certainly keep our eye on this talented young player.
Kyra, from Pearson High School, who also represented the Eastern Province Under 18-A team at the National Under 18 Hockey Tournament, was selected to the South African Under 18-B side. A total of 13 beneficiaries of United Through Sport’s programmes in Nelson Mandela Bay, including Kyra and Kiara, were selected to represent the Eastern Cape in either rugby or hockey.
“We are exceptionally proud of these young sport stars, particularly Kiara who showed true sportsmanship on the hockey field. While we pride ourselves on unlocking sporting opportunities for the talented children who participate in our programmes, it is equally important for us to nurture well-rounded children who show leadership and character on the sports field,” said United Through Sport Director Nick Mould.