Freestyle football legend inspires township youth
Cape Town - Guinness world record holder Khris Njokwana has gone from travelling the world showcasing his freestyle soccer skills to inspiring youth in townships around South Africa.
In 2018 Njokwana broke the record for the “highest altitude football dropped and controlled”. A crane dropped the ball from a height of 37.4m, and he had to control the ball and make five touches before it touched the ground.
Growing up in Langa, Njokwana refused to be a victim of his circumstances. ’’I have also always wanted to be in the glittery World Record Book since I was a kid’’.
His incredible love and passion for the game of football led him to conquer the world of freestyle football. The South African freestyle legend has travelled to more than 50 countries, showcasing his unique talents.
He started playing organised football at the age of six for his local team, Langa Liverpool. Throughout his teenage years he donned the prestigious jerseys of the top academies in Cape Town, including Old Mutual Academy, Hellenic FC and Santos. He also went on to represent the national team at university level before switching to freestyle.
His freestyle journey started ‘’quite late compared to other kids who are professional football freestylers“.
‘’I started at the age of 22,’’ said Njokwana.
He became a household name in freestyle circles after becoming the South African Freestyle champion in 2008, where he performed in front of 70 000 people.
When given the opportunity to become a world record holder, he remembers it being ‘’really tough because of the pressures that came with the World Record attempt“.
‘’Leading up to the attempt I went days without sleep because of anxiety. I trained both in Cape Town and Johannesburg because of altitude. The actual day of the World Record is a blur because everything went fast and I’m grateful I now hold a Guinness World Record.’’
The welcoming persona that Njokwana has along with his everlasting love for the game has made him a role model for a lot of children all over South Africa.
Njokwana is a huge fan of youth development.
’’I was inspired by Ajax Cape Town’s slogan of ‘No youth no future’. Growing up I never had proper coaching and thus why I’m passionate about player development from a very young age. It is also giving back to what I have learnt from my travels overseas.“
He has a passion for community engagement and has a strong belief that children are the future of our continent and country. He often travels around the country and does a lot of shows, motivational talks and free ball mastery sessions. “It’s my way of giving back as a thank you to the sport which has moulded me and given me everything I have.’’
Njokwana also donates clothes and trainers to young sportsmen and women.