In a class of their own

 

The winners of the 1996 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) were inducted into Sun International’s South African Hall of Fame in trendsetting fashion at Sun City.

The iconic Bafana Bafana team including the likes of Lucas Radebe, Neil Tovey, Mark Fish, Doctor Khumalo and Shaun Bartlett arrived early on 20 August for a casual game of golf ahead of a dinner that was anything but informal.

Former goal keeper, Andre Arendse joked about his poor golfing performance. “I think I should have played golf with vuvuzelas in my ears, maybe I would have played better,” he said. Mark Williams, scorer of the two goals against Tunisia in the Afcon final, however, found golf a breeze and as much fun as soccer.

Delicious food and memorable messages accompanied the dinner and induction that night. Celebrities including mixed martial arts fighter, Garreth ‘Soldierboy’ McLellan, and singer Nádine Hoffeldt were also there to pay homage to South Africa’s most successful soccer team.

Former Bafana Bafana players, Mark Fish and Lucas Radebe joke around on the golf course. Photo: Nicholas Zaal

“Our winning of the Afcon could not have come at a better time for South Africa,” said Caxton Local Media CEO, Jaco Koekemoer. “In those difficult times, our soccer team led from the front and showed that despite our difficult circumstances, we could unite in our diversity and accomplish much.”

As the host, entrepreneur Tbo Touch called the players, as well as the family of deceased John ‘Shoes’ Moshoeu and Sizwe Motaung, onto the stage to receive their awards, and the audience stood in applause.

Neil Tovey does not get nervous in front of the cameras during the golf. Photo: Nicholas Zaal

Former Bafana Bafana forward, Mark Williams enjoys golf as much as soccer. Photo: Nicholas Zaal

Radebe said this was the greatest thing to have happened to them in their lifetime. “I wish all our erstwhile members of the squad were still alive to witness this,” he said.

Bartlett added, “I think this induction alone will serve to spur the current crop of players on and others to come after them.”

Sun International’s group chief strategy and operations officer, Rob Collins said the South African Hall of Fame was established to honour South Africans who gave the most to their country. He added that not just sports people would be inducted, artists and contributors in other fields would also receive the honour. Already, Nelson Mandela has been inducted, as well as the 1995 Rugby World Cup winning team.

Former Bafana Bafana players Edward Motale, Lucas Radebe, Mark Williams and Mark Fish enjoy the golf at Sun City’s Lost City Golf Course. Photo: Nicholas Zaal

Andre Arendse tees off at the golf game. Photo: Nicholas Zaal

Celebrities at the event included popular songstress Yvonne Chaka Chaka, former Speak Out presenter and actor in the popular soapie, Muvhango, Dingaan Mokebe and all the who’s who of South African football led by current president Dr Danny Jordaan and former president Molefe Oliphant.

Afcon winners, Edward Motale, Lucas Radebe, Mark Williams and Mark Fish have a fun day out on the golf course. Photo: Nicholas Zaal

Also read: 

Legends are lined up for South African Hall of Fame

Who would you like to see inducted into the South African Hall of Fame? Let us know on our Facebook page?

  AUTHOR
Nicholas Zaal

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