Soccer and quotas

2016-12-07 06:03

IT seems that whenever our national rugby or cricket teams lose, transformation or quotas are bemoaned and blamed. What usually follows is the hypocritical and contradictory statement that these policies should also be applied to the soccer team.

While I don’t feel qualified to comment on the rugby side, I can with some confidence comment on the soccer side.

The Bafana Bafana squads regularly display more than their equitable share of white players and have had a number of white captains. Neil Tovey and Dean Furman come to mind.

Going back, SA soccer produced a multiracial side as far back as 1976 (despite the apartheid policies of the time and also, ironically, the same year that SA was formally banned by Fifa) and the national league has been “open” since then, so any calls for transformation in this regard are clearly unwarranted. If one wants to moan about the lack of white players in the team now, perhaps we should look at the prominence that the sport is given in the “white” schooling system, which is our country’s sporting production line.

Government policy also shunned soccer in white schools, and not enough has been done to bring the sport up to the same level that other sports enjoy.

DAN HASWELL

Pietermaritzburg

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