In the month of August we paid homage to the women of our nation and we celebrated the women in our communities. “We have celebrated all types of women this month and have acknowledged and still applaud the women of South Africa who take a stand, and who continue the fight against all the issues which seek to bring women down” says Tihara Baker, Relationship Manager of Engel & Völkers Southern Africa.
As our Women’s month draws to an end we have the privileged of speaking with Dane Van Niekerk, the right hand batter and Captain of the Momentum Proteas Women’s National Cricket team and gain some insight into her sporting career.
Dane’s journey started when she was just 4 year’s old playing cricket with her dad and brother in their backyard. She then started playing cricket as a sport and went through all the ranks in woman’s cricket: U/9, U/12, U/13 and U/15. She was spotted at the U/19 woman’s cricket where she then went to trials for the South African side and was later picked for the 2009 ODI Women’s World Cup in Australia and since she has not looked back and is living her dream.
What advice would you give to other women who wish to have a successful sporting career?
If you fall in love with any type of sport you must follow your dreams. Talent only takes you so far. You have to work hard. You don’t jump into any professional environment. You really have to work hard and train, but if you follow your dreams and if it’s something you really want to do then the opportunity in South Africa is there to pursue it, more so in cricket to be professional and do it as a job.
Do you have a role model? Who and why?
That’s difficult; if I have to look in cricket probably AB de Villiers at the moment. It was Shane Warne, but AB de Villiers is the best batter in the world and, you know, critics are getting him, but he just shows his class every time he goes onto the field and he never backs down from a challenge and he leads his team really well and that’s something I wish to do. He [AB de Villiers] has never been anything less than respectful to anyone that\s ever said anything to him so I think any person would strive to be, first of all, a person like that and a cricketer.
What is your motto in life? / What is your favourite famous quote?
“For with God, nothing shall be impossible”, we have a few players in the team that pray before a game and I believe in that and I guess I go about that before every game.
How do you conquer fears?
What is your outlook on investing in property?
Yeah, look, I think it’s important to invest. People like different things. I like property, because I like houses – it’s there and I can live in it. We’re actually in the market for a new house at the moment so I’m all for investing [in property].
Do you own any property?
Yes I do. A townhouse.
Where would your dream home be located?
Probably a beach house down the Garden Route. I would love anything by the beach so Knysna and those places.
Which room in your home is most important and why?
My room, because there’s a nice TV in there and it’s my bed. We don’t get to sleep there often so when we are there it’s probably the best room. And then the braai area (laughs).