COVID-19 impacts DUT Res League
Every year, from March to October, the Durban University of Technology’s (DUT) Department of Sport Administration hosts its Res League, but the pandemic changed those plans.
Zethembe “Zakes” Skhakhane, Res Life Sports Coordinator, says he wrote a proposal to the project officer and the acting director of Department of Student Housing & Residence Life and the HoD for sports. The proposal requested the merging of two departments, housing and sports, to participate in the same sports league.
“I did that because I saw students playing their respective sports in the field without any sort of structure and they were not adhering to lockdown rules. Students did their own thing since there was no Res League and other competitions because of the virus,” explained Zakes.
Zakes says he wrote to members of these different departments and suggested they organise a tournament which will be held indoors.
“We chose indoors because it is easier to control the number of people getting in the venue than it would be outdoors, therefore we are able to limit the number of people,” he said.
That is how they came up with the DUT Res & Inter-Campus Indoor Soccer Champions League. 50 teams participate in the league and they are put into groups of five making up 10 groups and this makes up the group stages. The top 2 teams in each group move on to the knockout round (last 20). After the last 20 knockout round the winning teams proceed to the last 10 knockout round. Then the last five remaining teams will again participate in a group stage and the team with the least points out of the five will be eliminated. After that there will be a third and fourth place final and then the final for first place will follow.
DUT Res & Inter-Campus Indoor Soccer Champions League knockout fixtures:
Normally, there is a separate tournament for DUT departments and another one for residences but this year the two were combined. Since the tournament commenced last month and ends before students begin their examinations, the matches had to be squeezed and the games were shorter (20 minutes instead of 90). During play there are seven players in each team and there must be at least one female in each team during play. The reason the girls play with the guys is because there is no netball because of the virus since sports was to be limited but everyone was to be be included.
“This league is some kind of recruitment competition, we watch who the best players are and then we try them in the university’s main team,” Zakes said.
The fact that this tournament is used for recruitment does not render it meaningless because there are some great prizes to be won. Third place is awarded a R1 500 voucher plus bronze medals, second place is awarded a R4 500/R3 500 voucher plus a full kit and silver medals. First place gets a R7 000 voucher plus a full kit plus gold medals and a trophy.