Jeppe old boy S’busiso Nkosi ready to wear Bok badge with honour

Jeppe Boys’ High School taught Sharks winger S’busiso Nkosi to love the badge.

“That Jeppe badge was treated like it is everything in the world. That gave me the platform to learn to love the Sharks badge as much as I love the Jeppe badge.”

His new love could soon be the Springbok badge.

Nkosi was named this month in the Springbok squad for the remaining tests in the Rugby Championship against Australia and New Zealand.

Nkosi matriculated from Jeppe in 2014 after receiving the Clive Hatch Education Scholarship in 2013. This scholarship is for underprivileged boys from Mpumalanga to attend the Johannesburg school.

Clive Hatch said the scholarship is for boys from the province because he experienced a lack of leadership in the province. The Jeppe old boy served in the Mpumalanga provincial legislature from 1999 to 2009 for the DA and said people often enter politics to board the “gravy train”.

A teacher at Barberton High School in Mpumalanga‚ who is also a Jeppe old boy‚ spotted Nkosi and advised him to apply for the scholarship‚ Hatch said.

Nkosi said the scholarship was “awesome”.

“As long as I could go to school‚ I could get food and shelter from hostel. That was fine. I could work that and turn it into something great.”

Nkosi went to the Sharks Academy after he matriculated and played for the Junior Springboks in the 2016 World Rugby Under 20 Championship in England.

Nkosi described Jeppe as a “world apart” from Barberton. He believes he would have achieved the same success‚ but it would have taken him longer if he had not attended Jeppe.

“We struggle with coaching in small towns such as Barberton. There is a lot of talent down there. That’s not the problem. The problem is developing that rock into a polished diamond.”

Hatch said Jeppe has a tradition of good ethics‚ management and sportsmanship. He attributes the majority of what he achieved in life to Jeppe.

Nkosi corroborated this view and said he applies the lessons he learned at Jeppe in the “course of life”.

“There is a hectic amount of discipline that we learned there‚ a huge amount of respect for our fellow people. It doesn’t matter who you are.”

– The Clive Hatch Education Scholarship was started in 2012. It covers the tuition fees for boarders from grade eight to matric‚ which costs about R450‚000. Three boys have been sponsored so far.

The school delivers presentations to various school in Mpumalanga advising pupils on the application process. Once the school finalises a shortlist of applicants‚ Hatch makes the final call.

Describing the selection criteria‚ Hatch said: “Almost like a good all-rounder. Not somebody who is not going to go there and not play sports or somebody that is going to go there and just play sports and forget their academic work … Somebody who wants to get an education and a background in leadership.”

By: Nico Gous – TimesLIVE

Source: TMG Digital.

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