Sponsors Engen have confirmed an exciting line-up to spearhead the tournament as official ambassadors for the 21st edition of the Engen Knockout Challenge and Engen Champ of Champs.
2023 marks an exciting milestone for South Africa’s leading youth football tournament. Since 2003, the tournament has served as a developer of exceptional footballers, coaches, referees and administrators.
This year’s event will be promoted by AmaZulu midfielder, George Maluleka, Cape Town City Youth Development Coach, Mark Mayambela, and former Orlando goalkeeper, Brighton Mhlongo. All of whom played in the Engen Knockout Challenge before progressing to the paid ranks.
Maluleka and Mhlongo will be making a return as tournament ambassadors. It will be the first time as an ambassador for Mayambela, who coached Cape Town City to the final of Engen Champ of Champs last year.
“I am honoured to be selected as one of the ambassadors of a tournament that continues to live up to its high expectations of producing talent,” said Mayambela.
“Engen’s commitment to this tournament must be applauded; not only has it produced professional footballers. But young coaches like myself are exposed to competitive opponents. Which also helps us hone and improve our coaching skills,” he added.
In 2021, the Engen Knockout and Engen Champ of Champs introduced a women’s tournament, affording some of the most talented female footballers a stage on which to showcase their talent.
FIRST FEMALE AMBASSADOR
This year will also see an increased effort to further grow the women’s tournament. Engen has therefore introduced Sundowns Ladies’ midfielder, Lehlogonolo Mashego as the tournament’s first-ever female ambassador.
Mashego, who has represented the SA under-20 women’s national team, said Engen’s investment in women’s football comes at a crucial time.
“Women’s football is on the rise and is growing popular. Banyana Banyana have qualified for their second FIFA World Cup and such success can only be sustained if we have caring brands such as Engen extending a hand to help develop women’s football,” said Mashego.
“I am honoured to be the first female ambassador. I am looking forward to seeing the talent on offer in this year’s event,” she added.
ENGEN KNOCKOUT CHALLENGE & CHAMP OF CHAMPS KEY DATES
MEDIA DRAW DATE
Durban – 13 June
Johannesburg – 03 July
Cape Town – TBC
ENGEN KNOCKOUT CHALLENGE REGIONAL TOURNAMENT
Durban: 30 June, 01 & 02 July
Johannesburg: 07 – 09 July
Cape Town: 28 – 30 July