Nwabisa Ngxatu, taking rugby coaching to another level!

By Maxwell Levine

Former Springbok and Border rugby player Nwabisa Ngxatu is flying the Komani flag high in women’s rugby circles. Ngxatu is the first Border women’s coach and was appointed in 2018. It seems she is enjoying the role after switching from player to coach.

She reached the final of the Women’s Premier Division in 2019 against Western Province. The Border women’s team has played five matches, winning three and losing only twice that year, but also lost that final.

She said, “Reaching the final is a great achievement for me, especially since our players are coming through from the junior ranks.”

At the time she said,” It’s good to coach players who look up to you as a role model. I have five under-20 players who are in the SA U20 team and four who play for the SA Women’s rugby team. My goal in future is to have a lot of players in the national team, especially from the rural areas.” This year the Border team is still unbeaten, having beaten Blue Bulls 17-11 in their first match, EP Queens 17-10 in their second match and defeated the Sharks Women 48-0 in their third match.

Ngxatu hopes to go one step better this year, and that is to win the Women’s Premier Division with her Border Ladies team. She is currently working with coaches who have a wealth of experience in Sabelo Kolanisi, Khaniya Tshokotshi and Zinikho Dumapu. The technical advisor is Siya Ketse. She said she drew inspiration by keeping the team motivated. I’m also trying innovative ways to motivate them as a young group and create a positive environment for them.

Communication is key and it must be a two-way stream.When motivating them, she said, “I celebrate good times and set goals. I also empower them to take full responsibility for self-development.” Ngxatu has taken the coaching job by storm.

Not only are her credentials as a player of the highest order, having donned the green and gold, she has proven beyond doubt that women coaches in rugby are just as competitive as their male counterparts. 

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