Non host-cities must get involved in Confeds Cup

Monday, May 25, 2009

Mafikeng - Cities that are not hosting 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup matches should be encouraged to be part of the excitement around the event.

"It is an event for everyone in this country, including those cities that are not offered the opportunity to host this wonderful soccer event," said North West MEC for Sports, Arts and Culture, Grace Pampiri.

"With only a few weeks left before South Africa hosts the Confederations Cup, I want to take this opportunity to encourage everyone gathered here to enjoy and be excited about this event."

She urged residents to own the events because the tournament would be nothing without the support of ordinary South Africans.

The MEC was speaking during the Mass Mobility Road Show held at Mafikeng Stadium on Saturday.

Government and the Local Organising Committee (LOC) are hosting the roadshows to mobilise the communities in the country to support both the 2009 Confederations Cup and the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Coaching clinics, led by the former Bafana Bafana player Mark Fish and former Banyana Banyana player, Desiree Ellis, were also held during the day to train up and coming young soccer players.

MEC thanked the former national team players for encouraging young people to participate in sports.

"I am happy that some of our stars that have represented our country oversees are here to help develop our young people with the experience that they have. We really recognise their contribution and their effort in making sure that our people become excited about the Confederations Cup."

Speaking to BuaNews Mr Fish said: "I am glad to be part of the road shows because the participation of all the South Africans in this tournament is very important. This is not only about the teams which are playing in the pitch, it's about development, entertainment and so much else."

Mr Fish said the youngsters who had participated in the coaching clinic had done very well.

"It's a wonderful experience for all of them. I like the fact that young people are looking forward to the event."

One of the first games of the Confederations Cup, New Zealand vs Spain, will be held at the Royal Bafokeng stadium on 14 June.

The 2010 mascot, Zakumi also made an appearance at the roadshow, which has already visited Galeshewe in the Northern Cape and Aliwal North and Queenstown in the Eastern Cape.