Draught games keep elders occupied

Club members Themba Matomela, member Vuyani Ncoyo and Themba Ndluayivalwa put their skills to the test in a game of draughts.

While many senior citizens stay active by starting food gardens at their homes or joining old age organisations, for one group in Gugulethu it is through the game of draughts that they find excitement and companionship.

The KTC Draught team was started in the late 90s and was aimed at promoting the game of draughts, which requires great skill and a high level of concentration.

Club representative, Themba Matomela, said the club has toured the province extensively and has won many tournaments.

He said the game had been around for years and was enjoyed by many for fun or as a hobby.

The club aimed to bring dignity to the game and change how it was perceived as some still saw it as a away of killing time and did not take it seriously as a sport.

Through the club, he said, they had also created a platform to tackle male matters head-on while advising each other on how to be responsible fathers and husbands in their families.

But most importantly, Mr Matomela said the game has enabled them to become one big united family and talk about various ways of living a healthy lifestyle.

He said the current members of the club were getting older so they had decided to start a youth team.

This enables them to share their skills, techniques and strategies and mentor the youngsters.

They also want to use the game to equip young men to become responsible members of society by keeping them busy and their minds away from negative things.

He hoped that the game could become a professional sport so that people could make a living out of it.

To play draughts one needs to be able to think critically and not make rushed decisions.

“I want to see government investing more in this game. This could be a great sport.

“The reality is that not everyone could be a professional football player or academic. I want to see young people excited about this game.

“I want to see change in this game. This game should be supported. I want to share my skills and knowledge about this game.”

Mr Matomela believes that draughts is one of the indigenous games of this country that should be preserved for the future generations.

Another club member, Vuyani Ncoyo, said he has been part of the club since its formation and his house has been used as a clubhouse and space to practice.

He said thanks to playing draughts, his mind has become sharp and it has made him a quicker thinker.