The University of Johannesburg welcomed former South African hockey player and Midrand resident Tsoanelo Pholo as coach of the Varsity women team.
The 35-year-old former hockey star, is also South Africa’s first black female hockey coach. and has represented South Africa 53 times, before retiring in 2010.
Even though African women hockey players have played internationally, and made Olympic appearances, we don’t get a chance to see that when it comes to African women as head coaches.
Pholo, has sat for the Level 3 Hockey Coaching Exams administered by the International Hockey Federation in partnership with the African Hockey Federation.
She also received her Level 4 Certification from Federation of International Hockey in 2018.
Besides taking charge of a number of representative teams, she guided the South African U18 team to the semifinals of the Youth Olympic Games last year.
Her appointment came about after she received a call from UJ late last year.
She said she had managed to make the transition from international player to coach without a hitch.
“It wasn’t easy to retire as a player to pursue my dream of becoming a world-class coach, but I have been coaching for a long time so it wasn’t an unnatural transition,” she said.
“I am passionate about hockey and the development of the next generation of players,” she said.