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06 March 2020 | Story Ruan Bruwer | Photo Supplied
Nomsa Mathontsi
Nomsa Mathontsi has been training with the South African senior women’s football team since Monday (03/02).

Whether she takes to the field or not, being part of the senior national women’s soccer team is already an accomplishment, says Nomsa Mathontsi. 

The BAdmin student in Economic and Management Sciences has been chosen for the Banyana Banyana squad for the first time. They face Lesotho on Sunday, 8 March 2020 in an international friendly in Johannesburg. There could be two Kovsies on the field, as Mating Monokoane, another University of the Free State student, was selected for Lesotho’s team. Both of them are midfielders.

The 21-year-old Mathontsi, who has been part of the Kovsie football team since 2018, says it will be a dream come true for her to wear the national colours. “Even if I don't get to play, I will still be proud of myself for being able to take on the challenge of going to camp and giving myself a chance to show my talent.”

“We have been together since Monday, 2 March 2020 and it has been the best experience, especially the fact that football has put me in the high-performance centre (South African Football Association girls’ academy), and now I get an opportunity to be with Banyana for the first time.”

“I was shocked when I got the call, but excited to face the challenge because it's never easy to get a call-up to Banyana, you need to work for it,” she says.

According to Mathontsi, who grew up in Mamelodi, Pretoria, her first love was athletics, but that changed during the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
“I was an athlete back in primary school and it just so happened that I was selected to play football, which I never really enjoyed. I also had the opportunity to be part of the 2010 FIFA World Cup ceremonies, where I developed a love for football.”

News Archive

UFS Cardiovascular Research Centre a South African solution to continental crisis
2015-11-30

From left are: Dr Robert Kleinloog, president of the Society of Cardiothoracic Surgeons of South Africa, Prof Jonathan Jansen, Vice-Chancellor and Rector of the University of the Free State (UFS), Prof Robert Frater after which the Robert W M Frater Cardiovascular Research Centre was named and Prof Francis Smit, head of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the UFS, at the launch of the new centre.
Photo: Johan Roux

“You don’t have to be in New York or any big city in the world to establish a cardiovascular centre that delivers work of world standards. I’ve learned that extraordinary things are achieved by ordinary people who apply themselves accordingly. This research centre is a South African solution to a continental challenge”.

These were the words of Prof Robert Frater at the opening of the new Robert W M Frater Cardiovascular Research Centre in the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the University of the Free State (UFS) School of Medicine.

The centre, one of only two of the kind in the country, will focus on bioengineering and cardiovascular research. It was opened on Wednesday 18 November 2015 in the Francois Retief Building on the Bloemfontein campus.

The centre is named after Prof Robert W.M Frater in recognition of his vast contribution to the UFS. He is internationally recognised for his outstanding academic, clinical, and scientific contributions to cardiac surgery. Prof Frater has also been actively involved in research activities of the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery for the last 10 years. In 2011, he received an honorary doctorate from the UFS.

Under the leadership of Prof Francis Smit, head of Cardiothoracic Surgery, the department has been described as a dynamic unit at the forefront of meeting the different changes in Southern Africa while maintaining an excellent clinical and academic track record.

At the opening, Prof Jonathan Jansen, Vice-Chancellor and Rector of the UFS, thanked Prof Frater for his presence at, involvement in, and support of the UFS. “I am looking forward to working in collaboration with the department to make this university a research centre of excellence in the continent”, he said.

The centre has existing endeavours already in operation, including Population projects, Clinical studies, and Clinical pathology, to name three. In collaboration with the Central University of Technology, the University of Stellenbosch, and Charite University of Berlin, among numerous others, the centre will be an appropriate help to an African challenge.

Its introduction promises advanced research outcomes with the potential to make the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery a world-class competitor.

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