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Tshepiso Makwembila who spent most of her childhood at Vaalwater, did not give up without a fight when she discovered her true love for volleyball.
Makwembila grew up loving netball and played it for most of her primary school days. At the age of nine she moved to Mookgophong where she attended Laerskool Eugène N. Marais and continued her love for netball and athletics.
“One day I was walking home through the township when I saw a group playing volleyball, I was not sure what it was at the time,” she told The Post / The BEAT.
At the age of 13 at Grd 7 year, she finally gathered the courage and asked the township volleyball coach if she could join and if he could teach her the game she found so intriguing. That is when she fell in love with volleyball. Unfortunately, the schools she attended did not offer volleyball as a sport, but this did not stop her from wanting to take it further.
After matriculating from Settlers Agriculture High school in 2016, Makwembila left to continue her studies in Polokwane and this is where her love for volleyball grew. “When I found out that they had a volleyball team I jumped for joy and immediately joined the team in 2017.”
She joined the Spikers team where she was finally able to compete in the local leagues and participate for the first time. “In May this year I received a call that changed my life,” said Makwembila. The South African volleyball coach had spotted her during the league games and asked her if she would join the team representing South Africa in China for the BRICS Games hosted in Guangzhou.
“I asked the coach if he was sure he had the right person, as I could not believe what he was asking me. He politely confirmed that he was speaking to the right person and I said yes without thinking twice,” said Makwembila.
Before their flight to China on 14 June, the township girl had never been on a plane and was nervously excited to be competing at international level. “It was a dream come true,” said Makwembila. The team played four matches in China and unfortunately lost all of them, but she mentioned that the experience was worthwhile and something she would treasure forever.
8 months ago 06 July 2017