Posted: 12/3/2009


       My SA friends say that I bring bad weather with me every time I try and watch a soccer match in Pretoria and in particular Loftus Versfeld, built by the Boer's money and black labour' to host provincial and international rugby.

    They are probably reluctant to admit that soccer is the money spinner for them. The rugby season has just finished, with The Blue Bulls playing maybe every couple of weeks and an occasional Springboks match. A few of the PSL soccer clubs call it home at the moment due to its location and other stadiums being rebuilt for 20110, so multi matches each week.

      Well, its summer here on the High Veldt and that means thunderstorms every other day or so. We arrive in the VIP viewing area as the heavens open and there is thunder and lightning. Eventually the match between Kaizer Chiefs and visiting Amazula from Durban is called off and the order is given to take the covers off what should have been the half-time buffet. Don't waste the food! I drink a couple of Savannah dry ciders to accompany a plate full of steak, chicken breast, rice and salad. Two other matches in the Joburg area suffer the same fate.  Two years ago we got to 6 minutes of play here before the referee took the two teams off the field.

     Electric power is out all over Pretoria and Mamelodi the nearby black township, which is even larger. Chaos as traffic lights fail. I arrive at our house and it's pitch black trying to go to bed. I step in the dogs water bowl with my bare foot, trying to get a glass of water in the kitchen. Peanuts the dog has only 3 legs-delicious!! NOT, just joking, he lost it in an accident 3 years ago.

     Dr. Danny Jordaan is the man of the hour and will be a star at the FIFA World Cup Draw in Cape Town's ICC Convention Centre on Friday evening-and I have just arrived in this wonderful city by air- 100 minutes from JNB Johannesburg. He was born in 1951 in Port Elizabeth in Eastern Cape. As a child he saw all his family furniture tossed into the street and his house bulldozed. The same happened to his school. It was the result of the Group Areas Act, and they lived in what was to be a whites only suburb.

     He worked hard at university in Western Cape and played soccer and cricket for his provincial teams, and was a pro soccer player for a while. He joined Steve Biko in SASO to defend the rights of black students and was also active in the ANC, and has three honorary doctoral degrees.  He led unsuccessful bids for the 2004 Olympics for Cape Town and the 2006 FIFA World Cup. In 1997 he was CEO of SAFA, the national football association and has helped organize youth World Cups and Confederation Cups for FIFA, who hold him in high regard.

     Friday evening he will be in front of the world and a personal success story if ever there was one.