The singing game

2009-06-30 00:00

WHEN it comes to the most passionate singing of the South African national anthem, the crowd at the Confederations Cup game between Bafana Bafana and Spain in Bloemfontein wins hands down.

They gave it stick for all they were worth. The predominantly black crowd sang as though their lives depended on it — including the Afrikaans and English bits.

Unlike the rugby and cricket crowds that only come into full voice when they come to the second part of the anthem, based on Die Stem. I suppose the rugby and cricket crowds are a lot better now at the first part of the anthem than they were 10 years ago, but they aren’t quite there yet.

Certainly nowhere close to the way that the Bloem soccer crowd performed. I saw one woman dressed in the colours of our flag with her hands clasped together singing our anthem with tears streaming down her face.

My immediate thought was that someone should get that piece of TV footage and turn it into a commercial for South African tourism.

The way that sportsmen and women and their supporters sing a national anthem is a dead giveaway about how proud they are of their countries. And the prouder they are of their countries, the more of a good impression it makes on people overseas who are potential tourists or investors. After all, brand building is all about emotion.

Which brings me to the way the players sing the anthem.

Admittedly they’re all nervous as heck before a big game but they could put a bit more effort into it. Some do and you can easily see the pride and passion on their faces but there are still a few who seem to be a bit embarrassed and shy about it all.

At least all our football and rugby players tend to at least try to sing. But our cricketers still need to try harder.

And I am still offended that there are still jerks like Jacques Kallis who stand there tight-lipped and refuse to sing the anthem. I know Kallis explained some time ago why he doesn’t sing the anthem and that he isn’t being disrespectful — I can’t remember what his excuse is and I don’t care.

Because it’s perception that counts not reality and the perception of anyone watching him will be that he doesn’t give a stuff about his country or his sport and is just in it for the money. — News 24.

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