Engen KO Challenge – 2019

The Engen Knockout Challenge 2019 to unleash a new generation of stars

South Africa’s leading youth football tournament, the Engen Knockout Challenge is set to unleash a new generation of stars when the 2019 edition kicks-off on 21 June in Port Elizabeth.

Now in its 17th year, the Engen Knockout Challenge comprises five regional tournaments. These will be staged in June and July starting in Port Elizabeth, moving on to Durban, Bloemfontein and Johannesburg, before the final leg in Cape Town.

*The award-winning tournament has produced more than 190 players who have gone on to play the “Beautiful Game” at the highest level both nationally and internationally.

David Notoane’s under-23 squad to play Angola for a place at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, includes 18 players who competed in the Engen Knockout Challenge earlier in their careers.

Lyle Foster of South Africa challenged by Hadji Wali of Malawi during the 2019 African Cup Of Nations U20 Qualifier match between South Africa and Malawi at the Moruleng Stadium, Rustenburg on 15 July 2018 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

EKOC Alumni include the likes of Lyle Foster (AC Monaco, France)‚ Tasreeq Matthews (Borussia Dortmund, Germany), Phakamani Mahlambi (Mamelodi Sundowns), Leo Thethani (Ajax Amsterdam), Luther Singh (GD Chaves, Portugal), Teboho Mokoena and Kamohelo Mahlatsi (SuperSport United), Grant Magerman (Ajax Cape Town), Siyabonga Ngezana and Reeve Frosler (both Kaizer Chiefs).

The Engen Knockout Challenge has not only positively influenced the lives of many of the players. The tournament also nurtures future administrators, team managers, match officials, physios and many more.

“This is why the Engen Knockout Challenge is a tournament that is about More Than Football, and goes beyond the white lines of the football pitch,” comments Bulela Mkandawire, Engen’s Brand & Sponsorship Manager. “It is about giving the players a stage to showcase their talent and possibly change the course of their lives and of their loved ones, while also inspiring the people in the communities from which they come.”

As a company, Engen is committed to skills development. This is done in various ways, including: a bursary scheme, a graduate development programme, learnership and apprenticeship programmes, and a computer school in South Durban, which teaches local residents basic computer literacy. They also support maths and science education via the Engen Maths and Science Schools, which provide supplementary classes to learners in Grades 10-12 at nine centres across South Africa.

Action from the game between Ajax Cape Town (red) and Grassy Park United (blue) during day 2 of the 2016 Engen Knockout Challenge at Parow Park, Cape Town on the 16 July 2016 ©Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

The 2019 Engen Knockout Challenge welcomes two new host clubs, as well as a new logo and trophy.

The two new host clubs are Wanderers FC, who play their football under the banner of the Langa LFA in Cape Town, and Bloemfontein Celtic FC, a giant of the local football scene and a club that needs no introduction to football fans.

The other host clubs are Glenville Celtic FC (Port Elizabeth), Amazulu FC (Durban) and Wits AFC (Johannesburg).

“June and July will see fans across five different regions enjoy the best South African youth football, with the Engen Knockout Challenge continuing its proud tradition of unearthing the next generation of football stars,” adds Mkandawire.

Tournament Date:
Cape Town: Langa Sports Complex 26 – 28 July 2019

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