EVEN though the mists of time may have dampened some of the memories of the greatest achievements on the Limpopo sporting landscape, a trawl through newspaper clippings, a look at the videos and conversations with the athletes confirm that the recent tournaments were much more of triumphs than just miracles.
Reliving some of those memories during a recent interview, Limpopo Sport Confederation president Eric Muneri’s enchantment was almost tangible.
The achievements were not touchy-feely miracles in the biblical sense, but in the sense that the province managed to overcome so much on their way to its greatest-ever sporting successes.
For the softball team that just won the National Provincial Championships (NPC) at the Polokwane Cricket Grounds, getting it wrong was not an option for head coach Lemo Raphasha and his plucky players.
They had a more difficult path to tread but still overcame the best among the best.
As the excitement built to the opening game against Western Province, the reality sunk in that it was against a team that exuded excellence from pitcher to position nine.
Softball’ success was preceded by volleyball women who returned from Volleyball South Africa’s NPC in Gauteng last winter with gold medals.
Although it was the first gold to be brought to the province, the achievement was like rain on the dehydrated sporting hopes of the hinterland.
The men’s team settled for silver, as did the beach volleyball team recently.
In boxing during their national championships, the pugilists returned from Cape Town like warrior men who have just conquered a war of attrition.
Of the 12 medals, there was one gold, three silver and eight bronze medals.
Muneri said he is impressed by the overall performance of the cricket side.
“The outstanding performance by our cricketers during the recent championships ensured the inclusion of our provincial coach Dumile Skadi and player Rynard de Lange in the national rural cricket team. So, this is a good indication of the work we do in cricket being so influential to the national agenda” he said.
In athletics, the name of Chris Moleya trotted out after the Zebediela jumper won gold during the national championship held in Germiston a fortnight ago.
He is heading to Stellenbosch for the senior high jump.
But most fundamentally, his greatest millstone is yet to be achieved in Poland in June where he will be participating in the International Championships.
“Watch the space… this boy is gradually entrenching his name in the sporting arena” Muneri remarked.
Meanwhile, the provincial u/13 football team, which obtained silver during the national championship late last year in Pimville, Soweto, restored hope for grassroots development in the province.