The Wits under-19 junior team have qualified for the touch rugby inter-provincial tournament.

Two Wits female touch rugby players played in the South African Touch Association (SATA) Junior Inter-Provincial Tournament at Hamilton Rugby Club in Cape Town, from September 21-23.

The women who play for the Wits ladies’ 7s rugby team as mid players, and who control play and tempo, Khanya Makhothi and Noluthando Ndaba, are part of the Wits under-19 side.

Makhothi and Ndaba were chosen from their squad in the team to represent Gauteng at provincial level after going for trials in May. The Eastern Touch Rugby Association was also represented at the tournament.

Coach Tristan Harris told Wits Vuvuzela the women are both brilliant players and “they add a lot of value to their Wits side.

Ndaba is a captain and Makhothi is one of our critical players; she is very attack-minded and has a very good mind for the game.”

Harris also said both players are in line for possible selection for the 2021 Junior Touch World Cup, with the host country still to be confirmed.

Ndaba told Wits Vuvuzela she has been playing for the province since 2015 and it has meant a lot to her because “it shows a difference in terms of growth for her and her teammates”.

“We [teammates and coaches] have set goals that include improving girls’ touch rugby in South Africa and the plan is to stick together and grow the sport.

Winning silver in this year’s tournament is the first step towards a bigger target,” Ndaba said. Makhothi told Wits Vuvuzela qualifying for the tournament meant a lot to her and their selection was unique “because they [coaches] work on skill and build from there; also three teams under each age group are chosen,” the 19-year-old said.

She added that she has greater plans for the future, having been given this opportunity to represent Wits University at provincial level.

“We played a very tough final that led to extra time, and due to one try difference we lost and came second,” said Makhothi.

SATA, established in 1994, is an association that has membership of the Federation of International Touch, consisting of junior teams competing in the under-17, 19, and 21 boys’ and girls’ categories.

FEATURED IMAGE: Khanya Makhothi selected to participate in the tournament prepares for the game. Photo: Provided