He has the talent and he has the work ethic, but if it was not for people who believed in him and cared enough to help him nurture his athletic talents and rise up from challenging circumstances, his dream of representing his country might not have come true.
Kutlwisiso Sidinile’s dream of representing South Africa has just come true after he was chosen to represent his country at the African Cross-Country Champs in Algeria on Saturday (March 17th).
Sidinile is over the moon, but one other person who matches his excitement is his coach and Soweto Nedbank Development Club chairman Siyaya Khoza.
About 3 years ago Khoza recognised Sidinile’s great talent, and went over and above his duties as coach to help the underprivileged Sidinile, who at the time was living with his unemployed mother in Westonaria. He did not have access to proper coaching and everything that goes with it. Under the watchful eye of Khoza and with the strong backing of the Nedbank Running Club, it all soon paid off and Sidinile’s running improved drastically.
Khoza’s passion for coaching young athletes and helping them recognise their potential comes from once being in exactly the same position and therefore knowing what these youngsters go through just to be able to run and compete.
Since being coached by Khoza, the young Sidinele has racked up some great wins and performances on especially the track and cross-country fields, but being selected to represent South Africa this coming weekend is his greatest achievement yet.
Sidinile, who will be competing in the Junior Category, is joined in Algeria by senior teammate David Manja. We have no doubt that when Sidinile lines up on Saturday the following advice and encouragement from Khoza will help him on his way: “I want you to see yourself as a winner, a champion, and you will be one.”