Border Schools

Border Schools aquatic sports

The excellent schools in the Border province have produced many aquatic sports stars - indcluding world record holder Jonty Skinner and Olympic gold medallist Joan Harrison.

East London Schools Selborne College Cambridge Clarendon GHS Hoërskool Grens Stirling HS Merrifield College (since 1997)

Other Border Schools Queen's College Dale Collge Kaffrarian HS

Waterpolo News from VIDES Tournament in East London Posted on February 17, 2013 by teachertalktom On a big weekend for our sport, we had our Rowing Club winning the Selborne Sprints Regatta and the Buffalo Regatta in East London. In another part of that city, our 1st Team Waterpolo team were competing in the Vides Tournament. We made the semi- finals in all bar one of the major national tournaments last year and that was our goal in this one too. Our boys played some outstanding waterpolo. We won five of our eight pool matches and, in truth, it should have been seven. Then at quarter final stage, we spurned too many chances to go down by two goals to the host school, Selborne College. Having lost to Jeppe in the pool, we put things right in the 5th/6th playoff, winning by a single goal in an exciting match. Coach, KRIS SZENTGYORGYI, would have preferred to have made the semi-finals, but he is proud of how his team have worked and played this year to date. The next big event is the National Schools’ Waterpolo Tournament at KES! VIDES 1st Team Waterpolo Tournament East London, 1, St. Andrews College: 8-6 WON 2, Jeppe: 5-8 Lost 3, Selborne 2nd: 12-1 WON 4, Hudson Park: 10-1 WON 5, Glenwood: 2-2 Draw 6, Grey PE: 8-2 Lost 7, Port Rex: 6-1 WON 8, St Charles’ College: 10-2 WON Quarter Final 9, Selborne 2-0 Lost 5/6 Pay Off 10, Jeppe 6-5 WON FINAL Placing 5th out of 18 teams. Well done boys!   David Vides - former President of the Border ASA

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Pearson HS

Pearson High School

Pearson High School is a public co-ed high school in Port Elizabeth. The Afrikaans medium high school caters for learners from Grade 8 to Grade 12. Pearson was founded in January 1926 as the PE Secondary School with just 35 students. The school moved to the Grey Institute buildings in 1927. The next year, the school was renamed Pearson High School after the Hon. William Pearson who served as the mayor of Port Elizabeth for 16 years. By 1938 enrolment figure stood at 575 and Pearson was the only parallel-medium high school in the Eastern Cape and Border area with classes offered in both languages in all standards. Pearson had become the high school with the highest enrolment in the province. As extra accommodation was needed, a new school was built in Bayview Avenue (now Erica Girls’ School). The school moved to this site in 1941. In 1976 the school moved to its present location in Summerstrand. In 2009 the school built its water polo pool. Pupils from Pearson have represented South Africa in all of the aquatic sports.

Virtually from the start of the 2018 season there has been one team that has been shining above the rest in the water polo pools across the country. It therefore comes as no surprise that Pearson finish the year as the No.1 Water Polo team in South Africa after completing a terrific season. The list of accomplishments for Pearson is hugely impressive; they took silver at the Brian Baker Tournament and then proceeded to win the Old Petrians, Reddam U19 and Co-Ed tournaments in convincing fashion. The 2019 season looks just as bright for Pearson who has already thrown down the gauntlet to the other teams by winning the Clarendon Stayers and St Stithians Stayers tournaments which perhaps indicates that Peason could well be a contender for next year’s No. 1 spot. However we can never discount the likes of Reddam and Saints who will be ready to challenge Pearson along with Herschel and Durban Girls College. Congrats to all the coaches, tournament organisers, supports and the players for producing a great 2018 water polo season. GIRLS WATER POLO RANKINGS, 3 December, 2018 RANK TEAM PLAYED AVG BONUS PTS 1 PEARSON 38 5.21 2 ST STITHIANS 53 4.93 3 REDDAM 30 4.88 4 DURBAN GC 39 4.15 5 HERSCHEL 25 4.06

Pearson Riding the Manthe Wave Wednesday, 12 December 2018  Within minutes of talking water polo – and Pearson water polo in particular – one becomes as enthralled in the journey as does one “Mr Pearson Water Polo and Aquatics” the affable Luke Manthe. And that passion, that certain Luke B. Manthe je ne sais quoi is intoxicating. I was rapt, riveted, captivated and enthralled by the tale, for the Luke B. Manthe narrative tells as much about Luke B. Manthe as it does about his successes with the Pearson water polo girls in 2018 competition against SA’s best.“Hey Jono, do you want to be my spin doctor or what! Thanks man that’s so cool to hear.”’Kay, Luke now I’m into serious sports journo mode: Firstly, you are Pearson water polo director and 1st team head coach or did I hear wrong?? Sorry I am no polo guru so help me here please guy.“Ah Jono you are there and thereabouts mate. Iam Head of Aquatics (Water Polo, Swimming, Artistic Swimming, Surfing and Surf Life-Saving) and the Head Coach of the 1st Girls Water Polo team yes.”So Luke I hear your Pearson girls had a recent title win or a few this year? Am I hearing correctly along the sporting grapevine?“You’re right on the money Jono. We had a really successful 2017/18 season and now in this, the start of the 2018/19 season. The 2017/2018 season started off with a win at the 2017 Clarendon Stayers' Tournament beating St Stithians in the semi-final and Stirling in the final. Later on the team went to St. Stithians' Tournament beating Reddam in the final 9-8.Phew, pretty decent that.“For sure. In the first bit of 2018 Pearson competed at the Brian Baker Tournament hosted by Kingswood College losing in the final to Reddam House from Cape Town. Pearson then competed in their last tournament of the 1st term which was Old Pet's hosted by St. Peters' College in Johannesburg where Pearson beat St. Stithians College 4-1 in the final.“Next up meant Pearson had to wait until the 3rd term to carry on with the 2017/2018 season. First up was the prestigious Reddam U19 Tournament hosted by Reddam House in Cape Town where Pearson beat hosts Reddam in the final 9-7. In October 2018 Pearson travelled to George to compete in the National Co - Ed Tournament beating Crawford College Lonehill in the final 5-2.“This brought the 2017/2018 season to an end, and the start of the 2018/2019 season: Pearson travelled to compete in the Clarendon Stayers' which they won at the start of the season in 2017/2018 but unfortunately this time went down to St Stithians 11-8 in the final. A week later the team travelled to Johannesburg to compete in the St. Stithians Tournament and beat St Stithians in the final 10-9.OK, okay Luke I’m getting dizzy with all the silverware and trophy-laden mantelpiece visions floating across my periphery, please nail it down for us, the road to Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh as it were… okay I’m mangling my metaphors and probably going to “geddin” to trouble, so seriously, the stuff Pearson have won please Luke.“Not on my watch Jono! So here we go. I have tabled it thus.” Breakdown 2017/2018 season Clarendon Stayers' - Gold St Stithians Stayers - Gold Brian Baker - Silver Old Petrians - Gold Reddam U19 Tournament - Gold Co - Eds - Gold 2018/2019 season Clarendon Stayers' - Silver St Stithians Stayers' - Gold Phew and more phew, Luke, I don’t know where Pearson keep all these polo accolades but it’s a measure of excellence in anyone’s book.So, your overall opinion of the standard of competition in these events and your opinion on the overall standard of girls high schools water polo in SA?“Jono, girls water polo in South Africa has really improved, where many schools and teams are rising to the occasion; bringing the level of girls water polo up in the country.”Luke in that light, which were Pearson’s toughest games this year and why?“Jono, as you know, no one likes to lose. So I would say the toughest games would be the Brian Baker Tournament where we lost to Reddam in the final and would say the St. Stithians final against St. Stithians winning the game in the last 6 seconds of the match.”Luke, of all your matches this year, which sides were you particularly impressed with among your fellow Eastern Province schools - and secondly among the outside-province teams nationally?“Jono this year Reddam and St Stithians have played some competitive water polo. Within the Eastern Province I have been really impressed with Clarendon Girls from East London under the guidance of Delaine Christian. Glenwood House from George have also grown from strength to strength.”Luke, that’s interesting to hear. So Luke, what was or were the factor(s) in terms of the essential ingredients that took Pearson water polo to a new level and to trophy time? Examples – might be consistency, BMT, dedication to training and conditioning programmes, incredible team spirit, playing the crucial/big moments well?“That’s an interesting question Jono. The Pearson team is a family. The girls work really hard to ensure that the team comes first no matter what. They have a number 1 rule - Never turn your back on your teammate. When your team is close they tend to push harder and encourage each other more to become better people.“The team is also fortunate to see our schools bio and attend yoga sessions with Yoga Shala in Port Elizabeth. All these added extras most definitely play a role in the success of the team. They also see a sports psychologist on a weekly basis in-season, which helps to tackle all the headstrong parts of being an athlete.”I really love that answer, Luke; we won two Rugby World Cups for much the same Team as Family reason I think. Can’t beat if all are one. So to win the water polo titles you have this year - of the quality Pearson have been up against in terms of opposition strength – how important was pre-tournament prep and what did you focus on? Or was it a case of simply doing what you and the first team group have been doing in the trainings through the 2018 year?“Jono, Pearson water polo has gone from strength to strength over the last few years. We as a school put focus on our coaches we employ and ensured they attended clinics and camps to improve. Both in January and August the team travelled to Stellenbosch and had a training camp with Stellenbosch University 1st team and played warm up games against Herschel, Reddam House and Somerset College.“Unfortunately being in Port Elizabeth we do not have many schools in the area to play against which forces us to travel. In the off season we made sure the team was fit and conditioned so when the season starts (which is a real short season) we then managed to focus on the smaller less things we don't always get time to do.”Luke, the quality and popularity of SA girls high schools water polo. Is it improving and why?“Jono, yes. With more tournaments, interprovincial tournaments and more international tours - our players in South Africa are getting exposed to more, which then improves the quality of water polo.”Relative to other provinces, where does EP stand - ahead or behind the powerhouses as far as development and popularity plus standard of polo is concerned?“As mentioned we do not have the same amount of water polo playing schools like Western Province and Gauteng so our selection pool is smaller. However, we do manage to keep up there, somehow. Nelson Mandela Bay (EP) U16A water polo girls won gold in December 2017 and the NMBU15A girls won bronze at the same tournament. And the NMBU18A team narrowly lost to Gauteng in the Currie Cup final in 2018.”Well, like Kiwi sport – and rugby in particular shows – you don’t have to boast massive playing numbers to excel and even dominate, as the All Blacks do, which is so-oooo frustrating for us Saffas.So Luke who are the Pearson players who have been consistent in 2018? Please indicate their position and why are they so good in those positions in add-value to the team? “Jono we have had quite a few players who have really stepped up this season so to make it easier to digest I’ll table it for you and the SA School Sports readers.#######“Here goes: Hannah Reid - Team captain and centre forward - strength and power Jordyn Meyer - Team V/Capt and centre back - defensive and ability to ensure ball never reaches their centre Erin Harty - Left side - speed and power shot Dayna Bond - Utility/ Left side - strong and powerful. Can shoot from anywhere which always keep defending team on their toes Yanah Gerber - Utility/ Right side - Strong and fast. Able to get up and down the pool with ease. Has the ability to throw the ball hard! Jade Vaughan - Right side - calm, cool and collective - does her job and extremely underrated with her abilities. Sharp shooter and solid on defence Nerine Cloete - GK - ability to pass the ball full length and quick and agile in the goals” Wow, Luke, that is impressive by any yardstick. Given your track record, what advice would you give to aspirant primary schoolgirl water polo players if they hope to develop match-in and match-out delivery of what’s required of them when they soon enter high school?“Jono what I have learned as a coach over the last few years is to remind the girls to never give up. Keep doing what you are doing; always try be better than the day before. It may take time or it may come easier to you than others. Either way, stick to your guns – and,very important: you must enjoy the journey.”I like that takeaway in the last sentence there, Luke. For without the “enjoy” there is never going to be an enriching journey.So, Pearson water polo – what has been the one special thing that has taken it to where it is now – the special power or culture that has grown over time, both in the first team and in the age-group teams?“Jono, we put a lot of focus into the quality of our coaches at Pearson. Each coach at Pearson has been coached by me through their years at high school. This helps, as they understand me as a coach and what I expect from their players too. This has helped us create a culture of water polo at the school.”Luke that answer alone speaks volumes for the Pearson water polo wave that is set well on course to never end. So before you took the reins, who was the initial driver of the Pearson quest for excellence in polo?“Mr Van Staden our ex Headmaster, now at Paul Roos; he was passionate about the sport and saw the vision of where it can go here at Pearson in Port Elizabeth.”Luke it seems, what with the success Pearson firsts have had, that it would be churlish of me not to ask for the first team line-up:“You’re spot on Jono.“Here goes:Goalkeeper - Nerine Cloete (Grade 10) -EP u18A & SA U16 L/Side/ Utility - Dayna Bon (Grade 11) EP U18A & Zimbabwe U18 L/Side - Erin Harty (Grade 11) EP U18A & SA U17 Captain R/Side/ Utility - Yanah Gerber (Grade 11) EP U18A & SA U17  Centre Back - Jordyn Meyer (Grade 12) - EP U18A Centre Forward - Hannah Reid (Grade 12) - EP U18A & SA U18 V/Captain R/ Side - Jade Vaughan (Grade 11) EP U18A & SA U17 R/Side/ Centre Back - Desire Coetzer (Grade 11) EP U18A R/Side - Linzi Scholtz (Grade 10) EP U16A & SA U16 L/Side/ Centre Back - Michaela Robinson (Grade 10) EP U16A & SA U16 Centre back - Isabella de Bruyn (Grade 10) EP U16A R/side - Paige Black (Grade 9) - EP U15A L/Side - Kerri Brooks (Grade 8) - EP U14A R/Side - Nicola Stock (Grade 12) EP U18A Lisa - Nicole Scholtz (Grade 12) EP U18B” And your first team coaching and management staff” “Jono we are fortunate to have many staff involved in the life of these water polo players. “Here goes:Head Coach - Luke MantheManagers - Kelly Nortje, Hannah Werth and Hannes Huisamen Bio/ Strength & Conditioning - Brink EksteenSports Psych - Wesley KewYoga - Simone Jacobs” You know Luke; I was dreading this interview in a way, as I am not that au fait with polo like I am possibly in other sports, but this has been a wonderful ride for me and I hope you’ve enjoyed it too. Your enthusiasm is contagious and I think that is possibly the Magic that is Luke Manthe. Finally, anything else you would like to add?“Thanks again Jono you are so kind and thank you on behalf of Pearson for this opportunity. In closing I’d just like to say the following: It has been a pleasure to coach these incredible humans. The way they carry themselves both in an out of the pool is special. Their sportsmanship is like no other and it is encouraging to see. I look forward to the future of Pearson water polo!”Aaaah, no need to say more. Good on you Pearson and long may it continue. Credit: All photos by Teamphoto SA

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Western Province Schools

Western Province Schools

1972 Western Province schools swimming team
1972 Western Province schools swimming team

Schools in the western Cape date from the late 1800's. There are many excellent schools in the region, which stretches east to the old provincial boundry at Mosselbay and north past Victoria West.. There are both state and private schools, many of which have developed strong aquatic sports programs for both water polo and swimming. Most of the private schools in the western cape are in or close to Cape Town

While polo is a school team sport, with some schools fielding ten or more teams, competitive swimming coaching in South Africa has traditionally being the preserve of private coaches. Schools compete in inter-schools galas at local, provincial and national level - even internationally, as SA Schools teams have sometimes competed overseas.Other aquatic sports like lifesaving, synchronized swimming and diving are also practiced mainly through private coaches and clubs.

Success in competitve swimming requires acccess to good facilities and coaches, which is typically only found in larger urban areas. Some rural schools - particularly well resourced private schools - have are very successful in water polo.

Cape Town  Boland
SACS Paarl Boys High - Paarl
Wynberg Paul Roos - Stellenbosch
Rondebosch BHS Bloemhof HS - Stellenbosh
Rustenburg GHS Rhenish GHS - Stellenbosch
Bishops Paarl Boys High
Herschelle GHS Paarl Hoër Meisieskool
St Cyprian's la Rochelle Hoër Meisieskool - Paarl
Groote Schuur  
Jan van Riebeeck Other Boland Schools
Camps Bay  
Belville HS Other Cape town Schools











The western Cape schools are, or have been, divided into Afrikaans and English medium institutions, which probably had an impact on their participation in aquatic sports. By August 2017 four of the five top ranked rugby schools in South Africa were Afrikaans, while only two Afrikaans schools featured in the top 30 water polo schools during 2017.

As with other provinces, most schools do not acknowledge the achievements of their former pupils online, although many have an honour's board that do list provincial and national competitors.

Western Province has always been a major force in South African Schools swimming. Below is the 1974 WP Primary Schools swimming team to the national primary schools swimming championships in Bloemfontein, with coach Clara Aurik on the right.


A brief history of schools water polo in South Africa

While water polo in South Africa has been dated back to the 19th century, there was not always a formal inter-provincial tournament in this country.

Each province started off on their own, with impromptu games taking place between boy’s schools after the weekly inter-schools galas, and these games can be traced back to the middle of the 20th century. While there was a fair amount of competition between the schools, not too many competed due to the long held belief that water polo would affect swimmers strokes. It was in 1970 however that Rodney Mazinter proposed the creation of a formal schools league in the Western Province, and things kicked off locally, spreading to the other provinces.

In 1970, at the Annual General Meeting for the South African Amateur Swimming Union (SAASU), Rhodesia, or Zimbabwe today, was the first group to propose the creation of an inter-provincial tournament similar to Craven Week for rugby. While the proposal was accepted by the board, the task to plan this was given to Rhodesia, but nothing happened for another three years, when Mike Mortimer made another proposal in a report for SA swimming Annual.

It was when Jannie Storm and Johan Terblanche got together though that we saw the creation of the precursor of what we know today as the SA Schools Inter Provincial Tournament. This first tournament was held in Potchefstroom in 1971, but was a far smaller affair to what we know today. Only three provinces attended (Transvaal, KZN and Western Transvaal). In the coming years, more provinces joined this event; however Western Transvaal never made any further appearance at these events. It was only in 1974 when the event evolved into the structure we know today, with multiple playing days, that saw things grow even more. Despite having made the initial proposal for this type of event, Rhodesia only joined in 1974, which meant the tournament consisted of U19 boys’ teams from Transvaal, Natal, Eastern & Northern Transvaal, Eastern Province and Rhodesia.

In 1976, it was decided that three selectors would be picked to choose the SA Schools team – although there was no guarantee that the selected team would play any matches together unless he hosting province could find any suitable opposition. The tournament continued like this, and in 1976 the Orange Free State joined, followed by Western Province in 1978.

In 1975, when Natal came out victorious, Rhodesia promised to have a far stronger side the following year. When the tournament came around, a strong Rhodesian side arrived at the Wits pool in Johannesburg. Once the traveling team had shown their strength by defeating all of the provinces, a mini test series was played against the selected SA Schools Team, and with the top players pulling together and playing well, Rhodesia suffered their first defeat of the tournament. This post-tournament event continued up until 1980, when the then Zimbabwe schools team played a SA Schools B team. However, after a shift in political climate in Zimbabwe, their teams would not return again until 1993.

As a filler to this, the SA Schools board decided to play against a SA Defence Force U19 team, however it was felt that this did not fit the event, and so was stopped in its very first year. Over time, there was an attempt to include both South West Africa (Namibia) and Griqualand West, however these sides fitted better into a B league, and soon they stopped attending the events. It was in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s however that we saw a boom in the tournament, and the growth to what we have today. As the years went on, more and more teams were added, until we saw age groups from U13 – U19 for both boys and girls!

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