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Sports Factor -

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Mick O'Regan: Hello, and welcome to The Sports Factor here on ABC Radio National. I'm Mick O'Regan.

Football, the round ball variety, is the global game, no doubt about it. And its marquee
tournament, the World Cup, is really the only even to rival the Summer Olympics for planetary
popularity.

Since 1930, the Finals have been held throughout the football playing world, but as yet, never in
Africa.

But hang on.

Sepp Blatter: The 2010 FIFA World Cup will be organised in South Africa.

Mick O'Regan: The President of FIFA, Sepp Blatter, giving the South Africans a sort of 'Syd-den-ee'
moment of their very own.

The announcement regarding the World Cup highlights the significance of football in that part of
the world. While South African rugby and cricket teams are well-known in Australia, the depth of
football talent may come as a surprise.

In some ways, it's a hidden treasure.

During the final decades of apartheid, South Africa's sporting isolation meant a generation of
football players simply never had the opportunity to play on the world stage.

Despite boasting some of the most talented players in the game, the South Africans' football
virtuosity was hidden by the necessities of politics.

Excerpt of 'The Team That Never Played'

Mick O'Regan: A slice of the forthcoming documentary, 'The Team That Never Played', which
investigates the history of football during apartheid in South Africa.

It's close to the heart of my guest on the show this week: Morio Sanyane, the Director of
Communications for the South African Football Association.

He's worked as an advisor on the doco, and he's in Australia this week to attend a fund-raising
event for the film. He's also the spokesperson for the SFA as they proceed towards 2010.

Morio Sanyane, welcome to The Sports Factor. To begin with, tell me, is everything going to plan
for the World Cup finals?

Morio Sanyane: Yes indeed, South Africa will be ready. All preparations are on track and I think
looking at the stadium construction, the road infrastructure and many other things, we are very
optimistic that come 2010 everything will go accordingly.

Mick O'Regan: Well I have to say I was in South Africa in March of last year, and was simply amazed
at the work that was going on at Johannesburg Airport, where I think a train station was being
built underneath the airport. Is that scale of construction indicative of what's happening?

Morio Sanyane: Yes indeed, and it's not only happening in Johannesburg, it's happening throughout
the country. A number of airports are being upgraded, you look at the road infrastructure, it's a
bit of an inconvenience at the moment because of the traffic jams but we do understand that after a
couple of months, things will be OK, and yes, come the Confederations Cup next year, which we are
going to host as well, there will be a bit of traffic flow, yes, like I said, major infrastructure
and development taking place.

Mick O'Regan: Now Morio, many Australians would associate South Africa with Rugby Union. Obviously
the Springboks is a very powerful brand in world sport. But for black South Africans, football,
that is soccer, has always been the predominant sport; is that the case?

Morio Sanyane: Yes, that's the case. I mean rugby's big and since the demise of apartheid you see a
lot of black people supporting the game of rugby, which is fantastic, but football is the No.1
sport in the country, and we feel that winning the rights to host the World Cup in 2010, it's an
exercise for nation-building, and we hope that the legacies of the World Cup will go a long way in
unifying our country.

Mick O'Regan: I'd just like to ask you about that. In practical terms, Morio, how will hosting the
2010 World Cup be a part of nation-building in South Africa? Because obviously it's now a dozen or
so years since the end of apartheid, but there's great hope for the impact of this tournament,
isn't there?

Morio Sanyane: Yes indeed. I mean South Africa's political history is a sad one. Major sporting
events, they are making a huge contribution in terms of nation-building; we saw back in 1995 when
we hosted the World Cup and we managed to win it, I'm talking about the Rugby World Cup. Everything
was so fantastic. And the following year, 1996 we hosted the Africa Cup of Nations in terms of
football, and we managed to win it as well. And the spirit of camaraderie, the spirit of unity in
the country was fantastic. And we feel that with this 2010 FIFA World Cup, it will also play that
meaningful role.

Mick O'Regan: Now just remind me, the Rugby Union team is called the Springboks, but Bafana Bafana
is that the nickname given to the national football team?

Morio Sanyane: Yes indeed. The rugby is Springbok, and there's a huge debate going on in the
country as to whether we should retain the name 'Springboks', but the football national team, yes,
it's called Bafana Bafana. I know a lot of people just do a literal translation of Bafana Bafana
being Boy's Boys, but in a township context it does not necessarily mean 'boys', but it means
excellent boys, it means boys who played or men who play great football with an amount of great
skill.

Mick O'Regan: That's right. So really it's not just a nickname, it's basically praise, it's a way
of extolling the virtues of the team.

Morio Sanyane: Yes indeed. I mean they don't call you Bafana Bafana if you don't perform well, but
when you display great artistry, that's when the people who are watching the game, normally say
Bafana Bafana, Bafana Bafana, and that's how the name was given to our national football team.

Mick O'Regan: Now tell me about within the continent of Africa, how does the South African team?
I'm familiar with the great teams that have come out of Ivory Coast, of Cameroon, of Nigeria, of
Ghana, how does the South African national football team compare with the other great African
teams?

Morio Sanyane: Well I think after winning the Africa Cup of Nations in 1996 the country was gripped
with euphoria. And I think we were too complacent, we didn't work too hard after that. At one stage
especially after winning the Africa Cup of Nations, we were ranked No.1 in the continent, and we
did extremely well. Immediately after 1996 we qualified for our first FIFA World Cup, that was in
1998 in France, and we went onto qualify for Korea-Japan FIFA World Cup in 2002. But after that
there has been a bit of a slump. But they're great African countries as far as football is
concerned, the likes of Cameroon, Ghana, Cote D'Ivoire [Ivory Coast], but yes, I think we are now
on the comeback trail. It's been a bit of a difficult period for us but we have refocused our
strategy, and we need to go back to where we belong, and that is at the top.

Mick O'Regan: Indeed. Is there a South African style in the way that when the Cameroon team for
example was playing, I think they were the Lions of Cameroon, there was great attention in one of
the previous Football World Cups about the exuberance of their play. Is there a style of football
that you can say, Well that's how the South Africans play?

Morio Sanyane: We have an exciting style of football that is similar to the Brazilian, and I know
that most commentators have said South African players are even more skilful than Brazilian
players. I think one challenging issue has been an influx of coaches from Europe that have somehow
tampered with the way we play, and I think given a national team, it really has shown that we have
changed the way we played, hence the decision by the South African Football Association to get
somebody from Brazil. You'll recall that last year we employed Mr Carlos Alberto Parreira, who
really did a great job in terms of taking us back to our roots to play the type of football that
we're used to. Unfortunately because of family problems, he had to go back to Brazil, but then we
appointed Joel Natalino Santana after consultation with Mr Parreira. And I think he's continued a
great job of making sure that we keep to our style of football. And that's where you see the crowds
are coming back in great numbers because of the type of football that the Bafana Bafana are playing
at the moment.

Mick O'Regan: Now during the long years of apartheid, obviously the money allocated to the
development and the infrastructure of African sport was severely depleted. I imagine in some cases,
non-existent. Could you give the listeners a sense of how football progressed under apartheid, and
what's happened since the end of that system?

Morio Sanyane: Well there were great disparities in terms of the allocation of resources across the
sporting codes. Rugby and cricket were really supported by the apartheid government, and football
was given nothing in terms of development. But through the passion and the hard work of many
administrators of football, they just kept the game going, and that is why we are saying a lot of
players were denied the opportunity to play international football because of the apartheid system.
And that is why we decided to work on this program called 'The Team that has Never Played'. Just a
group of many South African players, because of apartheid, who never got to contest in the World
Cup, but who kept the fires burning as far as football is concerned. And because of their
resilience and because of their participation in football under difficult circumstances, here we
are today celebrating to host the FIFA World cup for the very first time in over 100 years in the
African continent.

Mick O'Regan: Which is a fantastic thing obviously, and I'm sure there are many people listening to
this program who have some sort of wonderful ambition that they might actually get across to South
Africa for the 2010 Football World Cup.

To stay with the program though, now you've mentioned the 'Team That Never Played'. This is a
program that's being made and you're an advisor to that program. I understand it's a documentary
being made with Australian assistance. The program will look at what happened to that generation I
suppose, that was denied opportunity because of the racist policy of apartheid. What actually
happened to them? Were many of them able to leave and play in other leagues? Or did they simply
atrophy within South Africa?

Morio Sanyane: Well some were very fortunate to be spotted by talent scouts, players like Jomo
Sono, he went on to play in the United States and played alongside the great Pele of Brazil; Kaizer
Motaung who's the current owner of Kaiser Chiefs also went abroad and played alongside Pele. So we
had a number of players who at least got an opportunity to play international football. But
unfortunately they couldn't play within the FIFA-sanctioned tournaments as a country because of the
laws of apartheid. So most of them played at home, but some were very fortunate to play overseas.

Mick O'Regan: So during apartheid, how would clubs survive? I mean was it that clubs just had to
rely on second-rate facilities, playing on poor grounds with poor stadiums, or was there another
strategy that football, if you like, retracted back just to the township, just to Khayelitsha,
Soweto, Alexandra, that that's where the football occurred.

Morio Sanyane: Yes, I think the majority of football was played in the townships, and in terms of
survival, sponsorship was not coming through, but when things started changing a bit, some money
was pumped into the game, and we had sponsors coming through, but you couldn't compare the amount
of money that was injected into football as compared to cricket and rugby. So cricket and rugby
have always been well supported by the corporates as well as the government, but football really
struggled. But at the very same vein, people worked very hard. Some people even ran football
through their family money, and today we're fortunate because you look at the professional football
in South Africa it's rated amongst the best ten in the world, because of its commercial value.

Mick O'Regan: Isn't that interesting. Now earlier Morio, you mentioned the Springboks, and of
course people who are familiar with Rugby Union would know that when South Africa hosted the 1995
Rugby World Cup, one of the marquee players in the Springbok team was the African player, the black
African player, Chester Williams, a fantastic winger in that World Cup winning team. Of course now
if you look at the current Springbok rugby line-up there are a number of black African players and
there has been a controversial policy, controversial to some people, about trying to develop the
non-white players. Can I ask you then about football? Are there many white players in, what I
imagine is a black African dominated national team?

Morio Sanyane: Well there are very few white players and there is a reason for that. In terms of
football, there's never been a policy of segregation as far as players are concerned. I recall back
in the '70s there were white players who were denied by law to play for black teams, but we had
great, great players like Keith Broad, Phillip Fenter, Mike Lambert, Stuart Lilley who really
defied the apartheid laws and said, 'We don't belong in this particular legislative processes', and
they went on to play for black teams, under difficult circumstances. So football has never approved
laws that segregate. I think the challenge has been that in the school systems in previously
white-only schools, football was not played; they only played rugby, cricket and other sporting
codes, except football. So it was difficult really for many white players to come through their
systems. But I think as the South African Football Association, that's one thing that we are
challenging now, especially with the dawn of democracy, things are beginning to change. But in the
current Bafana Bafana team, we do have players like Matthew Booth, Bradley Carnell, Rowen
Fernandez, because as far as football is concerned, we have never seen colour.

Mick O'Regan: Morio Sanyane, Director of Communications for the south African Football Association,
the SFA.

So what about the next generation of footballers in the Republic, Morio, how is the SFA developing
South Africa's emerging talent?

Morio Sanyane: Well I think in terms of development at schools, the football there is being
administered by an organisation called SAFSA, that is, South African Football Schools Association,
and they're an associate member of SAFA, that is the South African Football Association. But we
have reviewed our strategies just in August this year. We had a development workshop in conjunction
with FIFA and the Confederation of African Football, where we decided to review our development
strategy, because we want to take control, or even put more programs that are monitored and
evaluated by SAFA in schools. Because I think we led the responsibility to the schools' governing
bodies and we decided that as the football custodians, we should be in charge of those programs,
and I think starting in the New Year, we are going to make sure that we drive development programs
in schools as well.

Mick O'Regan: Where are the main talent pools do you think? Is the main talent coming through South
African Football coming through the large cities like Johannesburg or Capetown or Durban, or is it
right through the country that people who are interested in identifying emerging talent are able to
go and pick and choose?

Morio Sanyane: Talent is identified throughout the country. In the rural areas for instance, I mean
you've got players who are coming from the rural areas where they have made it to the international
stage. So that's where we're trying to put our talent identification programs throughout the
country, not only focusing on big cities like Johannesburg, Capetown, Port Elizabeth, Pretoria, but
also go to the rural side, because that's where the talent is.

Mick O'Regan: Morio Sanyane, just to come to now what is a much more controversial aspect of the
hosting by South Africa of the 2010 Football World Cup, I think about a year ago, the American
Ambassador to South Africa raised concerns that crime, particularly street-based crime in South
Africa, was going to be an impediment to having people from other countries come to visit during
the World Cup, and it made international headlines that there were car hijackings, there were even
attempts at kidnapping of some wealthy executives from major firms. And the South African
authorities went to great pains to say that the crime issue would be under control. How successful
have they been?

Morio Sanyane: Well I think the fact that the government of South Africa has signed 17 guarantees
with FIFA, one of those guarantees is between FIFA and the Minister of Safety and Security, just to
make sure that things will be very much under control. But I think the security strategy has been
put in place, and currently a lot of effort has been put in not only by government, by civil
society as well, to make sure that we fight this scourge of crime. And South Africa's a beautiful
country, and it's just being spoiled by this unnecessary crime that is going on. But I think the
people of South Africa have decided that we have to work closely with our government, and really
fight these crime patterns. That is why we have things like community policing forums, we have
things like Help Lines, and I think judging by some of the past experiences, we have hosted
successfully tournaments like the Rugby World Cup, the Cricket World Cup, you know, the Africa Cup
of Nations, and many other international events, and they've gone off smoothly. We know that the
World Cup it's massive, it's big, but I think FIFA who are the world governing body of football,
have really been made at ease by the presentations from the government in terms of how this
security plan will roll out. And you know, we're not going to wait for the 2010 FIFA World Cup
itself, but these plans have kicked in now to make sure that every tourist who's visiting South
Africa and the South Africans themselves, feel as safe and secure within where they're operating.

Mick O'Regan: So how it would have worked, I mean people like yourself and other executives from
South African Football, would have gone to give presentations to FIFA specifically on the issue of
security both of players and visitors?

Morio Sanyane: Yes. That has been done, and I think FIFA very much is comfortable with the plan.
But like I said, it's not only focusing on the World Cup itself, the World Cup obviously it's a
protected event, there have been special Bills that were passed by parliament to make sure that it
will be safe, and all people that are coming through the country will be safe. And it's very
interesting, even currently you look at the number of tourists that are visiting South Africa, it's
quite encouraging, because a lot of work has been done in terms of stepping up security. It is of
course a challenge, but we feel that we will get over it.

Mick O'Regan: Right. The other thing of course that is a feature of the World Cup can often be the
prohibitive costs associated with going to see the games. I mean in Europe, in North America, to
get a ticket to a World Cup game, often involves a lot of money. Now South Africa is not a wealthy
country and it has a large group of people who could only be described as poor. Is there any
compensation, or any strategy to ensure that the broadest number of people are able to attend games
by making the tickets accessible?

Morio Sanyane: Of course the 2010 FIFA World Cup you know it's called the African World Cup, a
celebration of humanity, and obviously we want people to get an opportunity, because it might not
come again in their lifetime, so in terms of our strategy, we approached FIFA and discussed the
possibilities of reducing the price for South Africans, and that is why they worked out the
principle of Category D tickets, that are tickets that will be sold to South African citizens at a
very reasonable rate, and I think that will assist us in terms of getting crowds into the stadium.

Mick O'Regan: And the stadiums themselves, how many new stadiums have been constructed?

Morio Sanyane: Well we've got six new stadiums being constructed at the moment. From the six
stadiums that are constructed from ground, there's been considerable progress and for next year's
FIFA Confederations Cup we'll be having four stadiums that are going to be used, and as far as
those are concerned, we are very much on target, and yes, we hope that the dress rehearsal next
year, where eight countries will be participating in the Confederations Cup, will lead us to a
great tournament in 2010.

Mick O'Regan: Give you a chance to fine-tune all the things that you need to do.

The fame I suppose, or the public acclaim that goes towards Bafana Bafana, and once again I was in
South Africa in 1995 in the immediate aftermath of the Rugby World Cup, and I couldn't help but
smile at the number of times I saw Chester Williams' photo smiling down at me from billboards or
from buses and I'm just wondering now, sitting here in Australia, who is the face of the 2010 World
Cup as far as South African Football is concerned?

Morio Sanyane: It's a difficult one at the moment because the coaches are still giving every
eligible player an opportunity to play, they're still looking at players that have played in
England, or that are based in England, and other parts of the country. So because we haven't even
fine-tuned the last 22 players. But there are players that are consistent in the team, like Benni
McCarthy, the captain Aaron Mokoena, both players are playing for Blackburn Rovers in England. But
for now we haven't as yet, because the coaches are working very hard, trying to give every player
an opportunity to fight for their position in the national team.

Mick O'Regan: Just to go back Morio, to the apartheid era, and the players who were denied the
opportunity to really excel on the international stage representing South Africa because of the
isolation that apartheid meant for South Africa, is there any attempt to belatedly recognise and
celebrate the contribution to South African Football that that generation of players made? Will
they be focused upon in any special way during the 2010 FIFA World Cup?

Morio Sanyane: Well I think so, because their contribution is quite amazing. From the documentary
makers for instance, that is why it's being supported by the South African Football Association,
because it's quite an opportunity to showcase what they have done in the past, and I think the
success of the documentary program, it will be one of the contributions. Obviously there are
thousands and thousands of them, but really picking the few that will represent what they stood for
in the past, it will be a great achievement.

Mick O'Regan: And in terms of other African countries, my attention obviously goes to South
Africa's northern neighbour, Zimbabwe, which as almost every listener would realise is in a parlous
state because of the breakdown of democracy in Zimbabwe, does that have implications not only for
sport in Zimbabwe itself, but also for its neighbours like South Africa, like Mozambique, like
Botswana?

Morio Sanyane: Yes, I think it does, and that is why SADC group have appointed the former President
of South Africa, Mr Thabo Mbeki, to mediate in the process, because we do know that if we don't
have a stable Zimbabwe, it's going to impact negatively, and there's been a lot of hard work been
put, and hopefully a deal will be struck. Before I left the country a couple of days back, I know
that there was another round of talks in terms of the decision to share the ministry in the
power-sharing government, and unfortunately I don't know the update, but I know that there's a lot
of work been put in place, because if you don't have stability in the region, it might impact
negatively on the progress that the region has made so far.

Mick O'Regan: Who will sponsor Bafana Bafana in the tournament? Who are the main commercial
sponsors for the national team?

Morio Sanyane: Well the main commercial sponsors are ABSA Bank, Castle Lager from South African
Breweries as well as Adidas, so those are the strong commercial partners for the team until 2011.

Mick O'Regan: And FIFA has given special development money to South Africa to help with the hosting
of the tournament?

Morio Sanyane: Yes indeed, and the good thing as well FIFA has pronounced that they've made profit
as far as the FIFA 2010 World Cup is concerned in South Africa, and there's still by the way some
tier 2 sponsors that needs to be filled, so I think it's a good one but yes indeed, there's a lot
of money that has been allocated for development.

Mick O'Regan: So already FIFA can say that the tournament is going to return a profit?

Morio Sanyane: Yes indeed, that's what they pronounced.

Mick O'Regan: That's a remarkable thing a year and a half out.

Morio Sanyane: Yes, that's great, and I think it has really addressed all the pessimism that was
attached to the World Cup being taken to the African continent for the very first time. And we have
always been adamant that it will be a great success commercially and otherwise, and like we're
saying, our preparations are very much on track and we're looking forward to a great, great
tournament in 2010.

Mick O'Regan: Morio Sanyane, it's been a pleasure to have you on The Sports Factor on ABC Radio
National. All the best with your trip, your current trip to Australia, and of course all the best
for 2010 in South Africa, where I'm hoping I'll be able to watch the Socceroos play. Who knows,
maybe Australia will play South Africa in the final.

Morio Sanyane: Indeed, and well done to the Aussies, I know you're campaign is well on track.
You've won your two opening games against Qatar and Uzbekistan and yes, I think you're most
competitor is Japan, but you've beaten them in the last World Cup in Germany, and yes, I just hope
that you'll make it guys, it will be great to see the Socceroos in South Africa in 2010.

Mick O'Regan: Absolutely. Hope springs eternal. Morio Sanyane, thank you.

Morio Sanyane: Thank you, sir.

Mick O'Regan: Morio Sanyane, Director of Communications for the South African Football Association.

Well that's almost all we've got time for this week, except to point to next week's show, where
we'll learn a little about the significance of a sporting mum in the life of an AFL superstar.

Robert Harvey: I remember her coaching us in juniors, and how much she loved it; she had a passion
for it and I remember often going to cricket training, and she used to always have old cars, like
old big sedans, like Valiants and she'd pile as many kids and bags as she could in the back, you
know she felt like if anyone needed a lift she's the one to pick them up. So we'd often go with
just a car full of kids and gear to cricket training, and she'd coach everyone, and she just loved
it so much, and she was obviously very good at it as well. And footy, she had the same passion.
Myself and my youngest brother, so the middle one, me being the middle one, we were Essendon and my
oldest one was Fitzroy, which was my Dad. So she used to take us to Windy Hill every week.

Mick O'Regan: Every week?

Robert Harvey: Every week. Didn't miss, and even if we wanted to miss, she'd make us go. And she'd
be in the same pocket each week at Windy Hill. We'd always go down the front a bit towards, because
we were little kids, so we could see better, and it's partly to get away from Mum, because she used
to get - say it's the end of the footy, and we'd all get embarrassed because she'd get in fights
with blokes who were drinking, and we were a bit scared for her a couple of times, because she was
pretty vocal and she'd sometimes have a friend, but she was often on her own, and so when you look
back, you think, Gee, pretty gutsy effort.

Mick O'Regan: Guess who's Mum is a whirlwind. Recently retired St Kilda AFL champion, Robert
Harvey, and he's on next week on the program.

Thanks to the team of producer Andrew Davies and technical producer, Peter McMurray. And thanks
also to Sabrina Lipovic in ABC Radio Archives. I'm Mick O'Regan, thanks for listening. Join me
again at the same time next week for another edition of The Sports Factor, here on ABC Radio
National.