South African Sports News – 9 December
Bafana get tough draw
Bafana Bafana (pictured) will play Mexico in their opening Group A match of the 2010 World Cup finals, which kick-off on June 11 at the new multi-billion rand Soccer City stadium. Also in Bafana’s group are 1934 World Cup winners Uruguay and 1998 victors France.
Fifa secretary general Jerome Valcke and South African born Hollywood movie star, Charlize Theron, conducted Friday night’s draw at the International Convention Centre. Two thousand guests and 800 local and international journalists attended the high profile event watched by an estimated live television audience of around 200 million viewers …
The presenters were assisted on stage by a star-studded line-up of sports celebrities, which included England soccer star David Beckham, Ethiopian track legend Haile Gebrselassie, Protea pacemen Makhaya Ntini, Springbok rugby captain John Smit and Bafana Bafana player Matthew Booth.
South African president Jacob Zuma and Fifa boss Sepp Blatter welcomed the audience at the beginning of the 90-minute live show. Guests included the likes of Issa Hayatou, chairman of the World Cup organising committee, Nobel peace prizewinners FW de Klerk and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, not to mention former football icons Franz Beckenbauer, Michel Platini, Eusebio and Roger Milla.
The majority of the 32 coaches of the countries who qualified for the 2010 showpiece were at the draw. Ninety-one-year-old former South African president and Nobel peace prizewinner Nelson Mandela, affectionately known as Madiba, addressed the audience by video message. “This is the first time that the World Cup will be played in South Africa. We feel privileged and humbled. We must strive for excellence and reap the rewards of the World Cup. Ke Nako – It is time,” said Mandela.
England take series win after Kingsmead wash out
Rain had the final say as the fifth MTN one-day international (ODI) between South Africa and England was washed out without a ball being bowled at Kingsmead in Durban on Friday. The afternoon’s proceedings (or rather lack thereof) meant that the visitors claim the five match series 2-1 after the first match was also abandoned due to rain. England is only the second team to win a bilateral ODI series in South Africa with Australia having done the trick twice, in the 1996/7 and 2001/2 seasons.
It was a very disappointing end to the series for the Proteas who were hoping to win the Kingsmead encounter to even matters after a shockingly poor performance last Sunday at St George’s in Port Elizabeth. Graeme Smith’s men will instead have to wait for the opening game of the four match test series for a chance at redemption. The series begins at SuperSport Park in Centurion on December 16 and the Proteas will be thrilled to have stalwart Jacques Kallis (pictured) back on board their flailing ship.
The 34-year-old South African cricketing legend, undoubtedly the best all rounder this country has ever produced, is simply a must have for the Proteas and his absence for a part of the ODI series was a big factor in their defeat.
SA falter in Dubai
Neil Powell has been ruled out of the Emirates Airline SA Sevens tournament, which will be held at Outeniqua Park in George on Friday and Saturday. The veteran player injured his shoulder during the Dubai Sevens Plate Final against Australia over the weekend.
The youthful Australians stunned the IRB Sevens World Series champions 7-0 to capture the Plate, a day after they had beaten the same opponents 29-0 in a pool match. Marius Schoeman, who missed the Dubai Sevens tournament due to a calf injury, has replaced Powell, a former Springbok Sevens captain.
South Africa have returned to George along with 15 other international teams for the annual Sevens showpiece in the beautiful Garden Route city. Paul Treu (pictured), the South African coach, said the team’s two defeats last Saturday against Fiji (in the Cup quarter-final) and Australia was a big disappointment. However, Treu added that there were positives to extract from the failures in Dubai.
“The two losses were a massive eye-opener for the guys and they now realise that they will have to play so much better as the defending SA tournament and World Series champions,” explained Treu. “We were also able to give international debuts to youngsters like Cecil Afrika, Deon Helberg and JW Jonker, and that was a big positive for me. The youngsters now have a taste of what it takes to compete at the highest level and that will serve them very well in George this week,” he added.
New Zealand turned back the challenge of Samoa in the Dubai Cup final, 24-12, and take an early lead in the Series standings with 24 points. South Africa picked up eight points after losing to Australia in the Plate Final and the team is well aware that they will have to improve significantly to have any hope of defending their championship.
Meanwhile, a hat trick of tries by Springbok wing Bryan Habana helped the Barbarians to a 25-18 win over New Zealand at Twickenham on Saturday with the invitational team defeating the All Blacks for only the second time in 10 outings. The Barbarians’ only other victory over the All Blacks was the 1973 success in Cardiff, highlighted by the most famous try in rugby, scored by Gareth Edwards.
A clever break by Australia wing Drew Mitchell set up Habana’s first score. His second came via a 70m interception before he bagged his third try of the match with a clinical finish. The Springbok No 11 eventually left the field to a standing ovation after 70 minutes of inspired play.
Wallaby flyhalf Matt Giteau converted two of Habana’s tries and slotted a penalty, with another Springbok, flyhalf Morne Steyn, sealing the win with a second penalty late in the game. The All Blacks replied with tries from Ben Smith and Anthony Boric, but were unable to hold off their determined opponents.
Santos too good for Swallows
Heavy rain played havoc with the Absa Premier Soccer League (PSL) this past week with no less than four games having to be abandoned due to waterlogged pitches. However, there were good wins for second placed Santos, Orlando Pirates (sixth place), Ajax Cape Town (third place) and Kaizer Chiefs (fifth place) and things are getting really interesting now as the top teams jostle for supremacy in a very competitive competition.
Santos ran out comfortable 2-0 winners over Moroka Swallows at the Coetzenburg Stadium on Saturday night. Tyren Arendse (pictured right) opened the scoring in the 33rd minute when his 30-yard effort took a massive deflection off Kagiso Denge, giving Swallows ‘keeper Greg Etafia no chance. The Cape side then made it 2-0 just three minutes into the second half when Arendse’s clever pass gave Graham King a clear run in on goal and he made no mistake as his stylish chip found the back of the net.
Swallows enjoyed a fair amount of possession in the closing stages of the game, but the Cape side’s defence held firm to deny the Dube Birds any chance of staging a recovery. Santos’ next encounter is against struggling Jomo Cosmos who are last on the log, and they will be confident of coming away with another win against a side who are lacking direction and confidence. The match will be played at the Rand Stadium this evening.
Results (from left to right)
Golden Arrows 2 Black Aces 1
Bloem Celtic 3 Bidvest Wits 0
Maritzburg United 1 Platinum Stars 3
Jomo Cosmos 1 Orlando Pirates 0
Mamelodi Sundowns vs Santos (washed out)
Kaizer Chiefs vs AmaZulu (washed out)
Moroka Swallows vs Free State Stars (washed out)
Over the weekend
Bidvest Wits 0 Ajax Cape Town 2
Free State Stars 2 Jomo Cosmos 2
Platinum Stars 0 Black Aces 1
Orlando Pirates 1 Golden Arrows 0
Santos 2 Moroka Swallows 0
Maritzburg United 1 Kaizer Chiefs 3
AmaZulu 2 Bloem Celtic 1
SuperSport United vs Mamelodi Sundowns (washed out)
Mamelodi Sundowns 1 Bidvest Wits 0
Stars set to shine against Amakhosi
As per usual there are a whole host of PSL matches taking place all around the country over the next few days. The pick of today’s matches is probably going to be the encounter between fifth placed Kaizer Chiefs and Platinum Stars (eighth place) who have had a topsy turvey season so far.
Stars (pictured) are one of those sides who can beat any team in the league when on form, but they can also be terrible as the displayed by going down 1-0 to lowly Black Aces over the weekend. Chiefs have experienced a resurgence in form over the last couple of weeks and their convincing 3-1 win against Maritzburg United over the weekend will not be good news for Stars.
In weekend action, Santos will be aiming to keep on the winning path when they face the always-dangerous Golden Arrows, who are ninth in the standings, in what is likely to be a very interesting encounter at the Coetzenburg Stadium on Saturday evening. Santos have been very consistent this season, but they will have to have their wits about them against Arrows, who have pierced the armour of many a team this season.
Golden Arrows vs Free State Stars Chatsworth Stadium 3.30pm
Black Aces vs Orlando Pirates Puma Rugby Stadium 7.30pm
Ajax Cape Town vs Amazulu Newlands Stadium 7.30pm
Jomo Cosmos vs Santos Rand Stadium 7.30pm
Kaizer Chiefs vs Platinum Stars Orlando Stadium 7.30pm
Bloem Celtic vs Maritzburg Utd Seisa Ramabodu Stadium 7.30pm
Moroka Swallows vs SuperSport Utd Dobsonville Stadium 7.30pm
Bidvest Wits vs Moroka Swallows Bidvest Stadium 3.30pm
Free State Stars vs Black Aces Goble Park 3.30pm
Platinum Stars vs Orlando Pirates Royal Bafokeng Stadium 3.30pm
SuperSport United vs Jomo Cosmos Super Stadium 6.00pm
Santos vs Golden Arrows Coetzenburg Stadium 8.00pm
Kaizer Chiefs vs Bloem Celtic Orlando Stadium 8.15pm
AmaZulu vs Mamelodi Sundowns Chatsworth Stadium 3.30pm
Maritzburg Utd vs Ajax Cape Town Woodburn Stadium 3.30pm
Allenby clinches victory in Sun City
Robert Allenby narrowly defeated defending champion Henrik Stenson of Sweden to win the $1,2-million (R9 million) 2009 Nedbank Golf Challenge at the Gary Player Country Club in Sun City on Sunday. Allenby clinched victory on the third hole of a sudden-death play-off on a final day of fluctuating fortunes, which saw the Australian real in playing partner Retief Goosen’s two-shot overnight lead to join Stenson at the top of the leader board on 11-under-par.
The lanky Melbourne native then triumphed in a tense play-off to become the first man from ‘down under’ to capture the title. South African Tim Clark (pictured) and England’s Ross Fisher had their chances to be part of the play-off, but just could not turn up the heat when it mattered.
In the end Allenby was a deserving winner as he undoubtedly was the most consistent golfer over the four days with only six dropped shots and a large number of putts that skimmed the hole.
Scoreboard (South African unless stated)
277 – Robert Allenby (Aus) 68, 70, 68, 71
– Henrik Stenson (Swe) 70, 68, 70, 69
278 – Tim Clark 69, 72, 68, 69
– Ross Fischer (Eng) 73, 69, 66, 70
279 – Retief Goosen 69, 68, 67, 75
281 – Angel Cabrera (Spa) 71, 67, 68,75
282 – Nick Watney (U.S.) 73, 73, 63, 73
283 – Luke Donald (Eng) 72, 71, 68, 72
284 – Robert Karlsson (Swe) 70, 72, 71, 71
286 – Hunter Mahan (U.S.) 70, 71, 72, 73
292 – Richard Sterne 72, 75, 70, 75
With proceedings at the Gary Player Country Club now over, all eyes will be on Richard Sterne as the local player prepares to defend the Alfred Dunhill Championship, which starts on Thursday at the Leopard Creek Country Club in Malelane. Sterne will be looking to make amends for a poor performance in the Nedbank Golf Challenge where he finished last with a disappointing overall score of 292.
‘Time bomb’ set to explode again
Despite his recent points defeat at the hands of International Boxing Organisation (IBO) welterweight champion Lovemore Ndou, Phillip ‘The Time Bomb’ Ndou (32-4; 31 KO’s) will launch another comeback when he tackles Ali Phiri (5-1; 2 KO’s) of Zimbabwe in a scheduled eight round junior-welterweight bout at the Wembley Arena in Johannesburg on Friday night.
The hard-hitting Ndou (pictured) was regarded as one of South Africa’s most exciting fighters before a cyst on the brain forced him into retirement in 2004 at the age of 27. However, in 2008, two neuro-surgeons cleared him to fight again and after just one warm up fight, he took on namesake Lovemore for the vacant IBO welterweight title in July.
Despite showing glimpses of his past form ‘The Time Bomb’ was soundly outpointed by his 38-year-old opponent, and it seemed time for him to retire again. However, many pundits believe that rather than giving himself time to shake off his ring rust, Phillip instead rushed into a major fight without the right kind of build up or preparation. They feel that a couple of warm up fights against the likes of the light hitting Phiri is just what the doctor ordered – and they just may be right.
In the main bout of the Branco Sports Production bill, Isaac Hlatshwayo (29-1-1; 10 KO’s) will defend his International Boxing Federation (IBF) welterweight title against Jan Zaveck of Slovenia (27-1; 15 KO’s). Hlatshwayo won the title in August by outboxing the dangerous Delvin Rodriquez of the Dominican Republic in a bout held in Uncasville, Connecticut, USA. Like Hlatswayo, Zaveck is a slick boxer and earnt his title shot with an excellent knockout victory over rugged Argentine Jorge Daniel Mirande in June.
Whatever happens on the night, Hlatswayo can expect a hard outing against Zaveck, whose only defeat was to the highly regarded Rafal Jackiewicz of Poland in a bout for the European welterweight title in November last year. The Pole was awarded a highly disputed split decision victory over the Slovack in his home country and you can bet your bottom dollar that Zaveck will be aiming to ensure that his encounter with Hlatswayo doesn’t go the distance.
In another upcoming bout, which was supposed to have taken place last Friday night, Nkqubela Gwazela (17-7; 14 KO’s) will take on Nicky Otieno (18-3; 7 KO’s) of Kenya in an international bantamweight contest in East London. The former South African flyweight champion is a dangerous puncher who has the power to knock out anyone he faces, but he can be outboxed, which is something the wily Otieno will be hoping to achieve come Friday night.
Cobras and Lions cruise to victory
The Nashua Cape Cobras and the bizhub Highveld Lions proved to be to strong for their respective opponents as both teams recorded comfortable victories in their respective SuperSport Series matches over the weekend.
The Cobras simply had too much firepower in their bowling department for the Diamond Eagles to handle as the Cape franchise recorded a convincing 106 run victory over the Free State outfit at Newlands in Cape Town on Sunday. The Eagles were rolled over for just 131 runs in their second innings with seamer Vernon Philander (4/32 in 13 overs) and spinner Robin Peterson (5/60 off 15.2 overs) the destroyers in chief.
The Cobras had earlier notched up 226 all out in their second innings, which was just five runs shy of their first innings total. The Eagles had recorded 220 all out in their first innings and both teams found themselves in favourable positions until Philander (pictured) and Peterson’s superb efforts sealed the match for the home side.
The Lions made a meal of the Nashua Titans at Senwes Park in Potchefstroom as they crushed their Gauteng rivals by an innings and 216 runs. The Lions piled on the agony for the Titans when they notched up a mammoth 550/7 declared in their first innings with Vaughn van Jaarsveld (135 runs off 174 balls), Zander de Bruyn (144 off 235), Stephen Cook (77 off 164), Grant Mokoena (56 off 85), Neil McKenzie (42 off 88) and Thami Tsolekile (49 off 130) all getting amongst the runs.
The Lions bowlers tore through the Titans batting line up in their first innings with the Pretoria franchise only managing a paltry 134 all out. Cliffie Deacon (4/43 off 15 overs), Friedel de Wet (3/39 off 13 overs) and Pumelela Matshikwe (3/29 off 11 overs) all combined well to send the Titans packing.
Faced with a huge first innings deficit of 416 runs, the Titans wilted under the pressure and could only muster an ordinary 200 all out in their second innings. Farhaan Behardien (50 off 64 balls) was the only Titans batsman who was able to offer any real resistance in another very ordinary batting display by the Pretoria outfit. Deacon (3/73 off 19.1 overs) and DeWet (3/37 off 19 overs) were again among the wickets as the Titans failed to apply themselves.
The weekend’s results left the Cobras on top of the log with 59 points, slightly ahead of the Titans (57.42) and the Lions (57.14). The Chevrolet Warriors (53.14), Eagles (46.62) and Nashua Dolphins (46.42) are in fourth, fifth and sixth place respectively. This week’s fixtures pit the Dolphins against the Warriors at Kingsmead in Durban while the Lions take on the Eagles at the Wanderers in Johannesburg.
Scores in brief
Cape Cobras vs Diamond Eagles
Cobras: 231 & 226
Eagles: 220 & 131
Result: Cobras won by 106 runs
bizhub Highveld Lions vs Nashua Titans
Lions: 550/7 dec
Titans: 134 & 200
Result: Lions won by an innings and 216 runs
SA Swimmers excel in Rio
The South African team earned six silver and two bronze medals at the weeklong International Paralympic Committee (IPC) World Short Course Swimming Championships in Rio de Janeiro, which finished on Sunday.
South Africa’s medal winners were Shireen Sapiro (silver in the 100m backstroke and 100m butterfly, S10 category), Shannon Ferguson (50m and 100m freestyle and 50m backstroke, S3 category) and Tadhg Slattery (pictured) who captured silver in the 100m breaststroke and bronze medals in the 100m and 200m individual medley races in the SB5 category.
“The results achieved by the South African team at these championships was the perfect way to finish off a highly successful 2009 aquatics campaign for South Africa,” said Swimming SA chief executive Shaun Adriaanse. “On behalf of Swimming SA, I would like to extend my best wishes to the swimmers who did us so proud in Brazil,” he added.
Bafana get tough draw – Photo – Bafana Bafana: Source – nelsonmandelabay.gov.za
England take series win after Kingsmead wash out – Photo – Jacques Kallis: Source – samsungcricketlovers.com
SA falter in Dubai – Photo – Paul Treu: Source – www.sabcnews.com
Santos too good for Swallows – Photo – Tyren Arendse: Source – www.de.oleole.com
Stars set to shine against Amakhosi – Photo – Platinum Stars: Source – www.premiercup-bayhill.co.za
Allenby clinches victory in Sun City – Photo – Tim Clark: Source – www.thesibylspeaks.wordpress.com
‘Time bomb’ set to explode again – Photo – Phillip Ndou: Source – www.goldengloves.co.za
Cobras and Lions cruise to victory – Photo – Vernon Philander: Source – www.flickr.com
SA swimmers excel in Rio – Photo – Tadhg Slattery: Source – www.news.bbc.co.uk