The South African Football Association (SAFA) is trialling a new digital technology designed to limit the practice of age cheating in school sport.
SAFA on Friday launched a programme to digitally register all school football players in a national database linked to the department of home affairs.
“By 2017, SAFA aims to have a country-leading database incorporating the majority of school football players, and poised to expand into amateur and professional leagues,” said president Danny Jordaan.
The programme will register players down to under-13 level with identity documents and photographs on the Inqaku registration system.
The data will be verified by SAFA, local administrators and Inqaku. Verified players cannot change age details without repeating the process.
“Fighting age cheating is one of the many benefits of registering players in a national database and to be clear, SAFA does not expect that it will eradicate the problem overnight. Over time, we will learn a great deal about the issue and identify further methods to combat it,” Jason Anderson, SAFA digital consultant told Fin24.
He added that a trial will be launched that allows pitch-side verification of a player’s details to ensure there was no cheating.
“If there is any doubt as to the identity of a player on the team sheet or on the pitch, any coach, player or parent can scan player’s QR code on the team sheet using the free Inqakuapp to see that player’s verified details, including age, on the secure Inqaku website.”