Footy hearts still beating in South Africa
Wednesday, March 24 2021 @ 09:32 pm ACDT
Contributed by: Troy Thompson
Footy in South Africa, like most parts of the world shut down when Covid-19 hit early in 2020. Despite the efforts of citizens and authorities there are still around 110 deaths a day (7 day average) occurring in the nation attributed to the virus. This has come down from almost 600 deaths per day at the last peak..
Across the nation a number of other sports have resumed and in the North West province some former AFL South Africa employees want Aussie Rules to start again. During 2020 the development officers who were previously employed had to be stood down as footy was unable to be played throughout the nation.
Wah Seoka Brah Kabzah was one of those employees. In recent months he has had many of those that he introduced the game to coming to him wanting to start footy training and playing once again. “People here love footy, but with AFL South Africa closed we no longer have a job but we still have a passion for footy…we really love the game, we grow it here, it cant just die like that.”
Gathering the few resources he has on hand (a few junior footys) he has organised training in the past couple of weeks with those keen starters and this week called for male and female players to join them in Vryburg’s Huhudi Stadium in the North West Province.
“I want to involve 3 or 4 communities Vryburg, Klerksdorp, Mafikeng and Rustenburg, I want to have matches after Easter and I already have 2 communities busy training, each region at least should have 2 communities playing footy.”
The AFL remain confident that AFL South Africa will resume footy operations at some stage and continue on into the future with funding available to the program, but are cautious about the Covid-19 situation which compared to that in Australia is still considered extremely dangerous.