Khanya Dilima, an International Relations honors student from Stellenbosch University, was selected for the Gbet Rocks team after a very successful 4 years at Maties Sport.
Dilima grew up loving playing different kinds of sports, but he always loved the game of cricket. “When I was in grade seven, I started playing cricket and soccer. I always just loved the game of cricket, playing in a good cricket team and the system was really good for me growing as a cricketer.” He goes on to say he was approached to come to Maties and become a student-athlete.
The 22-year-old made his debut at Gbet Rocks and refers to Jacques Kallis and Hardick Pandaya as his inspiration and often imitates his abilities to the all-rounder cricketers.
Dilima is part of the Maties Sports High-Performance (HP) Unit that is dedicated to developing the sporting talent of student-athletes through evidence-based intervention programs and professional services. The HP unit assists athletes by providing academic support to student-athletes competing at a national or international level to achieve their academic goals while meeting the demands of resilient training and regimes.
“Khanya Dilima epitomizes everything that Maties Cricket and the High-Performance program stands for, grit, determination, highs, lows, and sacrifice to becoming a Pro cricketer with a degree. The work ethic shown over 4 years is second to none and he deserves all the accolades that come his way,” said Maties Head Coach Ryan Bailey.
Strength and Conditioning Coach, Grant van Velden describes the first impression of Dilima as a “tall and skinny” kid. But he changed that perception as Dilima’s exemplary work ethic was proven from the very first day, whether it was vigorously training at the gym or spearheading the team during conditioning sessions. He would always quest to enhance his cricketing skills by learning directly from the coaches and teammates.
” To see Khanya make his debut for the ‘Gbets Rocks’ recently is one of the highlights of my career and it proves that hard work, doing the small things consistently well on and off the field, as well as being a great person can lead to success if you are willing to stick to it and trust the process. I am immensely proud of him and wish him all of the best for his end of year exams and the rest of the cricketing season,” said Coach Grant van Velden.
The right-handed bowler was given the opportunity to bowl the last over of the innings at the Varsity Sports Cricket Semi-final against NWU-Pukke. “What a semi-final it was- for me that was the birth of the bowler/player and leader we have today,” van Velden expressed.
Maties Sport Cricket Manager Keagan van Aarde goes on to say, that Khanya’s determination to become a successful cricketer is inspirational for Maties Cricket on various levels. From a socio-economic aspect to a strategic objective to the developmental student experience.
“As a club manager, my hope is somewhere there is a young black cricket player that finds the inspiration and motivation to become the next successful student-athlete despite of socio-economic factors and background,” he concluded.