Oct 25, 2023

On the 14th of October 2023, the Danie Luckhoff Hall at Innovation for the Blind in Worcester bore witness to a remarkable sporting spectacle—the Western Cape Goalball Championship finals.

The Western Cape Goalball Championship finals made history this year by crowning the HWA/Boland College club as the overall champions in both the men’s and ladies’ competitions. What makes this achievement even more remarkable is that it was the first time in the championship’s history that both the male and female teams of the same club secured victory. This victory underscores the dedication, talent, and teamwork that have made the HWA/Boland College club a force to be reckoned with in the world of goalball.

The star of the tournament was undoubtedly Goodness Maropeng, who emerged as the highest goal scorer of the Western Cape Championship with an astonishing 73 goals. Maropeng’s exceptional performance showcased the individual brilliance that adds depth to the success of the HWA/Boland College club.

The championship witnessed fierce competition from several talented teams:

Ladies Teams:

  1. Hein Wagner Academy
  2. Maties
  3. Athlone School for the Blind
  4. Innovation for the Blind

Men’s Teams:

  1. HWA (HWA/Boland College)
  2. Eersteriver Goalball Club
  3. Athlone School for the Blind
  4. Maties

The success of the HWA/Boland College Goalball club doesn’t end with their Western Cape triumph. Players from the club are now gearing up to participate in trials scheduled for 28 October 2023. These trails will lead to the National Parasport which will be held during the Easter Holidays in 2024.

How Do Blind Athletes Play Goalball?

Goalball is a paralympic sport that challenges athletes to rely on their sense of hearing and touch. The game is played by teams of three players, positioned on the field, one on the left, one on the right, and one in the center. Athletes wear masks that completely cover their eyes, rendering them sightless during play. The goal net is located behind the players, and the objective is to stop the ball before the opposing team scores by rolling the ball into the opponent’s net.

The unique aspect of goalball lies in the ball itself. It contains pieces of metal that create a distinct sound when it is thrown or rolled. This auditory feedback is crucial for the players to orient themselves and react to the ball’s movement. Players stay on their hands and knees to defend their net, using their bodies to block and control the ball. Bells inside the goalball further assist the players by indicating the direction of the ball’s movement. As a result, complete silence is maintained in the venue while the game is in progress, allowing players to rely solely on their hearing to play the game.

The HWA/Boland College Goalball club’s extraordinary success at the Western Cape Goalball Championship is a testament to their commitment, dedication, and remarkable skills. As they prepare for the trials, this young club has already proven that it is a force to be reckoned with in the world of goalball. Their historic victory and the thrilling spectacle of goalball itself exemplify the spirit of inclusivity and determination that defines this remarkable sport.

We wish both teams good luck with with the trails ahead and we know they will continue to shine!