South Africa: A Journey Into South Africa's Sporting Hinterland - in Search of the Magic


Can Rugby World Cup glory translate into wider world domination in sport? Perhaps, but...

O Minister! My Minister

Our Fearful Tourney is done

The Boks have weathered every tackle,

The Prize we sought is won,

The holidays are near,

The Bells I hear,

The people are exulting.

I suspect this is what American poet Walt Whitman would have put to paper had he been around in 2019 to witness the Springboks' triumph.

Nathi Mthethwa, Minister of Sports, Arts, Culture (all the fun things), can afford to go on holiday, proper, next month. He looks like a guy who enjoys relaxation and some pampering; perhaps a couple of hours to have his nails done. I have never seen someone so serious about the serious stuff, yet so invested in the not-so-serious stuff too.

Before the woke among us lynch me, let me hasten to say there is absolutely nothing wrong with metrosexual politicians. All new aspirant politicians are a bit image-obsessed.

Mthethwa reminds me of Percy Montgomery, one of the Springbok heroes who brought the World Cup home in 2007. That man's left foot was honed in the branch of mathematics known as geometry. It got balls to pierce the uprights...

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