Banyana captain gives back to football

Banyana Banyana central defender Janine van Wyk continues to be a trendsetter in women’s football development. Having set up her own JVW Girls School Soccer League a year ago, she has now bought a franchise in the Sasol League in which top performers from her school league feature.

The captain of South Africa’s women’s football team founded the JVW Girls School Soccer league a year ago with the aim of giving school girls an opportunity to develop their careers in the game of football.

The Mondeor-JVW Football Club is wholly made up of girls drawn up from the JVW Schools League and includes van Wyk herself, who moved from national champions Palace Super Falcons, where she was playing last season. Another top player in the side is Van Wyk’s Banyana teammate Robyn Moodaly.


banyana-captain-250Banyana Banyana defender Janine van Wyk celebrates scoring what proved to be the winning goal in South Africa’s 1-0 victory over Nigeria in the semi-finals of the Caf African Women’s Championship in Bata, Equatorial Guinea, 7 October 2012 (Photo: South African Football Association)The Banyana Banyana defender said she left her former club and defending Sasol League champions Falcons to fulfil her vision of developing upcoming women footballers. She believes the club she started has created an excellent platform for younger players to achieve their ambition.

“I decided to buy Mondeor because of the development structures they had in place already,” Van Wyk explained. “Since I have an interest in girls’ football development, this is an opportunity to give the young players something to work towards and realise their potential as footballers.

“Playing in the Sasol League is a step in the right direction for this team and I also feel it can only enhance my performance in Banyana colours.


“I have set myself on working harder as a player and [to] serve as an inspiration for the up-and-coming players within the team.

“We have been playing well since the Sasol League season started, having played four games, losing two, drawing one and winning the other,” said van Wyk, who serves as a player/coach for the club.

“I have several coaches who have been helping me in the club. That includes Lisa McAuliffe, a former player in the Irish Women’s League,” she added.


Banyana Banyana coach Joseph Mkhonza believes the robust Banyana defender has done well for herself as a player and is doing sterling work for younger players on the development front. He hopes that her example will encourage other former players to get involved with the development of women’s football in the country.

“I am very happy that Janine has taken this great step. While she is still an active player, she is also looking at giving younger players opportunities to grow,” Mkhonza stated.

“Coming from Super Falcons, a team that had star players, I don’t think playing for her new club will affect her performance as a national team player. She is a natural winner and will continue working harder, and at the same time guide and develop future stars.

“I have seen the team myself. It is growing and has huge potential,” he concluded.

 First published by – South Africa’s Official Gateway.