Port Elizabeth - Former Eastern Province Craven Week and SA Schools prop, Lupumlo Mguca, is being provided a once in a lifetime opportunity to finish his studies at the prestigious Burnside High School in Christchurch, New Zealand.
Mguca will be leaving for New Zealand later this week on a scholarship, provided by the SA Rugby EP Kings Academy and funded through the generous sponsorship of BLG Logistics, along with support from the EP Rugby Union.
On his arrival in New Zealand, Mguca will complete four of his matric subjects, while taking part in an extensive rugby programme offered through the school. He will then return next year, where he will complete his matric in line with the Kings Academy Programme.
Burnside High School is the largest secondary school in the South Island of New Zealand. It is a co-ed school with an established reputation for academic excellence, with 2 600 registered students including international students from more than 45 different countries.
“This is an amazing opportunity for a local boy from Swartkops Valley Motherwell, to experience the culture of New Zealand, and be schooled and coached by some of New Zealand’s top coaches.
“The first scrumming coaching session is going to be taken by the legendry Mike Cron, the All Black scrum guru,” said EP Kings Academy Manager, Robbie Kempson.
Kempson said Mguca would be staying in a Homestay programme while in New Zealand - where exchange students are placed with a local family - being placed with the school’s first team coach’s family.
“This is a great opportunity for him. No other school in New Zealand offers such a full programme to develop their students’ rugby abilities. The number of hours of high-level skills training and weights is basically the same as for a professional player,” he said.
Kempson said Mguca would be able to stay in touch with his family through a dedicated Facebook page that was set up for daily updates, as well as through regular Skype calls.
“From the Kings Academy perspective, I think it is a once in a lifetime opportunity for a very talented young man,” said Kempson.