Amanda Dlamini wants to inspire youth through football

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Banyana Banyana midfielder Amanda Dlamini says she wants to leave a legacy by inspiring the youth mostly from rural areas through the national team platform.

“I want to use this opportunity to inspire the youth to realise their dreams. That is how I want to be remembered,” said the former Banyana Banyana captain.

The roving midfielder is involved in the development of girls through her budding community building institute, The Amanda Dlamini Girl’s Foundation.

The foundation focuses on empowering young women in the rural areas by providing them with life skills and information to help them in their youth stages as well as coaching clinics.

“I set up the Amanda Dlamini Girls’ Foundation with the aim of helping girls in the rural areas with basic necessities. The aim was to also provide them with enough information to shape their careers and reach their dreams in life.

“We conducted coaching clinics at one of the disadvantaged schools in the rural areas of my hometown in KwaZulu Natal and that experience was quite fulfilling. I want to inspire some of these youngsters to follow their dreams through sports and provide information about sports bursaries and the likes. I enjoy interacting with the young girls during some of our coaching clinics,” said the dreadlocked midfielder.

Amanda has been involved in several community building projects such as the Sports Heroes Walk against Aids together with fellow teammates Noko Matlou and former Banyana Banyana captain Desiree Ellis.

Dlamini was back to her old best last Sunday when she helped Banyana Banyana wallop Mozambique 5-0 in a one-sided friendly match played at Kanyamazane Stadium on Sunday.

Still modest in everything she does, Dlamini said the trick to Sunday’s run-away victory was purely because the team played according to instructions.

"We just stuck to the plan and it worked out well because we have been playing together for quite some time now.”

She said the coach’s instruction was to help the new players feel at home.

“That we did very well and the fact that their introduction was capped with a massive victory should have worked as a morale booster for them,” said Dlamini.

Dlamini, who led the Sasol-sponsored women’s national squad during their first-ever Olympic campaign last year, relinquished her Banyana Banyana captaincy in order to focus on her studies and concentrate on improving her game without the pressures that comes with being the team leader.

"I felt my performance on the field on Sunday was ok but there is still room for improvement. The coach asked me to express myself without any pressure and I am happy things worked out more than I expected.”

She said while giving up the captaincy was not an easy decision, the move has rekindled her old form.

"As captain, you have to be at the top of your game all the time and lead from the front. That pressure is now gone and am again enjoying my freedom and football,” said Dlamini, who is currently completing her third year of studies in Transport Management at the University of Johannesburg.

© COPYRIGHT 2013 Sasol in Sport - Banyana Banyana