Motlanthe gets 'gift of a lifetime'

Thursday, May 19, 2011
By: 
Kemantha Govender

Durban - English football club Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) has presented Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe with a copy of the Tottenham Hotspurs Opus.

Motlanthe has been a Spurs fan for quite some time and this follows the club's announcement of their tour to South Africa for the pre-season Vodacom Challenge.

Spurs will compete against Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates.
South African fans will be delighted because they will get to see national stars Steven Pienaar and Bongani Khumalo in the Spurs squad that has promised to feature a top notch line-up.

Gareth Bale is likely to be joined by team mates William Gallas, Rafael van der Vaart and Aaron Lennon on the tour. The club confirmed that its manager Harry Redknapp will not be in the country.

Khumalo was present when Motlanthe received the gift from the club's executive director, Donna Cullen in Johannesburg on Wednesday.

Motlanthe is said to be a Spurs since 1963 when the club toured South Africa for the first time.

"This is a gift of a lifetime, I really feel honoured to receive this Spurs Opus on a special day for us in South Africa when we are having local government elections," he was quoted as saying on the club's website.

"When that great Spurs team came to SA under the captaincy of Danny Blanchflower and managed by Bill Nicholson it just left a lasting impression on me, there were great players there like Jimmy Greaves, Cliff Jones and Dave Mackay, and they are legends and since then I have always followed Spurs through the different mangers and different generations and I think the current generation come very close to emulating that 60s generation," he added.

Spurs, who previously competed in 2003 and 2007, will take on Kaizer Chiefs on Saturday, July 16 in the first match of the tour.

Pirates will then play Spurs three days later in Nelspruit. Chiefs and Pirates will battle it out in Port Elizabeth on July 21.

The winner from the Soweto derby will then play Spurs in a final in Johannesburg on July 23.

Newly crowned English Premier League champions Manchester United also participated in this tournament in 2008.