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The Surfer

Bringing cricket to Khayelitsha

Gary Kirsten shares his thoughts on developing sporting infrastructure in the biggest township in Cape Town, coaching and leadership

Speaking to Alec Hogg in, Gary Kirsten reflects on his foundation's motive of raising £600 000 to set up an artificial pitch for the Chris Hani High School in Khayelitsha, a township in Cape Town. He also shares his thoughts on the questions surrounding AB de Villiers' captaincy in the wake of South Africa's pre-mature exit from the Champions Trophy.
I think there are many initiatives on the go and we've just felt that the one gap in that space is through the schools and I think that there's a lot of emphasis being placed on development within the clubs, club systems and facilities dotted up all over the place and it's not to say that those aren't working. I think a lot of those projects are working, but you know, as I said, Khayelitsha's the biggest township in Cape Town, where I live and when we did some research on it, it was glaring to kind of see that through eight schools we went to, each with a thousand scholars, that they were absolutely no sporting facilities.
I mean, it actually shocked me to be honest with you. I couldn't believe that with sport being such a crucial component to a young person' s development in their life as we know, and it's not about producing one or two that go onto play cricket at the highest level, it's actually not about that. It's about young kids after school, having extramural activities to keep them occupied and to grow their general wellbeing. Sport plays a huge component for every one of us in that and for them to be denied that opportunity; I think it's something we need to address.