South Africa qualified for the Africa Cup of Nations on Saturday thanks to a 2-1 win over Sudan, a victory they dedicated to former captain Senzo Meyiwa, who was murdered three weeks ago.
The 27-year-old goalkeeper and captain was gunned down by an intruder at the home of his pop singer girlfriend south of Johannesburg on Oct. 26.
After Saturday’s game, new goalkeeper Darren Keet dedicated the win to Meyiwa, paying tribute to his friend by sporting a moving, handwritten quote from the Bible on his gloves.
“The verse on there [the gloves] was John 15:17, where it says: ‘There’s no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friend.’ I’m emotional of course, he was a great friend of mine,” the 25-year-old Keet said.
“I just want to pay tribute and honor him. I never got the chance to go to the grave but I hope he’s watching us from above and knows that we are thinking about him,” Keet added. “I just wish he was here with us, that’s all I can say, that’s what makes it emotional, is that he is not here with us. We want him here as a team, but unfortunately his time has gone and we have to move on and his memory will stay strong.”
Saturday’s qualifier took place in Meyiwa’s hometown and victory allowed Group A leaders South Africa to join Algeria, Cape Verde, Tunisia, Gabon, Zambia, Cameroon and Burkina Faso in the finals.
Equatorial Guinea, named as tournament hosts in place of Morocco on Friday, qualify automatically for next year’s Jan. 17 to Feb. 8 event.
The Cup was moved to Equatorial Guinea after Morocco was stripped of the right to hold it after insisting on the continental showcase being postponed due to the Ebola crisis.
In other games on Saturday, Nigeria blanked Congo Brazzaville 2-0, with Malawi beating Mali by the same scoreline, Cape Verde outplaying Niger 3-1, Guinea routing Togo 4-1 and Angola playing out a scoreless draw with Gabon.
The day’s five other games all produced 1-0 scorelines, with Burkina Faso edging Lesotho, Cameroon beating the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Uganda overcoming Ghana, Zambia defeating Mozambique and Senegal outclassing Egypt.
Kamaru Usman put on a Fight Island masterclass yesterday to retain his UFC welterweight world title by grinding down a brave Jorge Masvidal in Abu Dhabi. “I’m at the top of the mountain and everyone’s looking at me,” said the 33-year-old Usman after scoring a unanimous points decision 50-45, 50-45 and 49-46 on the three judges’ cards. The Nigerian-American Usman (17-1) looked the fresher fighter, with Masvidal (35-14) having taken the UFC251 headline bout at just six days’ notice when Brazil’s Gilbert Burns (19-3) tested positive for COVID-19 and was unable to travel. The Las Vegas-based UFC pulled off a power-packed schedule with
Thailand international Pitsamai Sornsai, a new arrival for Inter Taoyuan, is to lead her team against Taipei Bravo tomorrow in the 10th round of the Taiwan Mulan Football League. Sornsai, who is nicknamed Pui, has attracted interest from media and fans as the first foreigner signed to play in Taiwan’s women’s league. Inter are among six teams battling for the title this year. The addition of Sornsai is a boost for the international profile of women’s soccer in Taiwan and elevates the competition. The 31-year-old brings a wealth of experience, including from the Asian Football Confederation’s Women’s Championship, the Southeast Asian Games and
MONKEYS ALSO WIN: The Rakuten Monkeys kept the Brothers from the first-half title as they dominated the Uni-President Lions, scoring four in the fourth The CTBC Brothers still need another win to clinch the first-half CPBL title, despite thrashing the hapless Fubon Guardians 17-0 yesterday, after the Rakuten Monkeys beat the Uni-President Lions 9-2. Fans of CTBC Brothers were hoping to celebrate the first-half title, with a crowd of more than 10,000 packed into the Taichung Intercontinental Stadium for their home game against the Guardians. The figure was an attendance record for this year, when baseball and most other major sports events worldwide have been played in empty venues due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Entering the game, CTBC had pushed their magic number down to 2, meaning
Preparing to complete a ninth Serie A campaign without winning the scudetto, AC Milan decided that returning to the pinnacle of club soccer required a new approach. Roc Nation, the entertainment agency of US rapper Jay-Z is at the center of it, linking up with Milan to scour the world for sponsors, and use concerts and other high-profile events to attract new fans. And who better to ask about how to end a title drought than the team who just won their league for the first time in 30 years? “We have been talking to Liverpool, because they’ve been through the same path