NSL Second Division

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NSL Second Division
Founded 1985
Folded 1995
Country  South Africa
Level on pyramid Level 2
Promotion to NSL Castle League
Most championships African Wanderers (2 titles)
Cape Town Spurs (2 titles)

The NSL Second Division (also referred to as the OK League for sponsorship reasons), was a South African association football league. It was the second tier on the South African football league system, and teams who won the division, were promoted to the NSL Castle League.


Already in 1978, there was a merger of the topflight NFL and NPSL, to form the first non-racial division for the First Level of South African football. The new common topflight league, was named NPSL Castle League in 1978-84, and renamed to NSL Castle League in 1985-95. In the early years from 1978-1986, relegation/promotion to and from the topflight non-racial football league, according to official records actually did happen, but apparently it still happened from a Second Level league structure, divided into whites/blacks/coloureds.[1]

The NSL Second Division began in 1985 as a feeder to the then top tier National Soccer League. In March 1987, the naming rights of the division were sold to South African Breweries who also sponsored the NSL's top tier league with their Castle Lager brand (the top tier was known as the Castle League), the competition was titled the OK League after the brewery's bazaar chain "OK Bazaars".

It is claimed by the Premier Soccer League that the division was the first non-racial Second Level of South African football. Teams were promoted to the NSL Castle League from the Second Division, and those relegated from the Castle League would compete in the Second Division the following season.[2]

The competition was originally an individual league table (referred to as a "log" in South Africa) but in 1990, it was felt that the league was becoming too expensive to run and it was decided that the competition should be split into regions. As a result, the number of teams increased from 17 in a single league to 40 divided into two divisions (known as "streams"). These divisions were named "O" and "K" as part of the title sponsor's marketing campaign.

In 1995 the league was diluted further and developed into four geographical streams (Northern, Southern, Eastern Cape/Natal and Western Cape), each comprising 19 clubs.[2] In the space of six years the number of participating teams had risen from 17 to 76.

When the National Soccer League competition was rebranded in 1996, the organizers also replaced the NSL Second Division. It became the new National First Division. Apart from a new name and a better sponsor deal, the most significant change -both at the First and Second Level- was to change the fixture schedule from yearly seasons, into the more commonly used International standard of September–May seasons.


Season Winner (promoted to NSL) Also promoted to NSL
NSL Second Division
1985[3] QwaQwa Stars Klerksdorp City
1986[3] Leeds United PE Blackpool
OK League
1987[3] Cape Town Spurs Umtata Bush Bucks, Natal United
1988[3] Mighty Blackpool Vaal Reef Stars
1989[3] Umtata Bush Bucks Halls Dynamos, Pretoria City
1990[3] African Wanderers Highlands Park FC[nb 1]
1991[3] Cape Town Spurs Ratanang Mahlosians
1992[3] Vaal Professionals D'Alberton Callies
1993[3] Real Rovers Royal Tigers
1994[3] African Wanderers Jomo Cosmos and Rabali Blackpool
NSL Second Division
Year Winners Region
1995[4] Camps Bay Western Cape
Pretoria City (Promoted) Northern Transvaal
Crystal Brains (Promoted) Kwazulu-Natal
Stocks Birds United Northwest Region
1996 Continued as the National First Division
  1. ^ As a result of the NSL merger with FPL, the six highest ranked FPL teams: Real Taj, Tongaat Crusaders United, Bosmont Chelsea, Santos, Manning Rangers and Dangerous Darkies were also promoted to the NSL Castle League for the 1991 season.


  1. ^ "South Africa 1978". rsssf.com. Retrieved 7 May 2011. 
  2. ^ a b "About the National First Division". PSL. Retrieved 7 May 2011. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "South Africa Cup History". rsssf.com. Retrieved 3 May 2010. 
  4. ^ "South Africa 1995". rsssf.com. Retrieved 2 December 2012.