THE chances must be good that South African sports fans will have to go through yet another test of their physical and mental health tomorrow night.
After nerve-wracking victories for the Proteas and Springboks on Saturday, it is the turn of the other member of South African sports’ big three, Bafana Bafana, to produce the goods.
With a victory in the crucial World Cup qualifier against Zimbabwe in the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg, Bafana Bafana could round off a wonderful period for the big three.
But please Bafana Bafana, if you can make this one an easy victory, we as South African sports fans will really appreciate it.
To go through another nail-biter after the Proteas beat England in a T20 World Cup thriller in Sharjah by 10 runs, and the Springboks just getting the better of Wales by 23-18 in Cardiff, would be asking too much of us.
The Proteas and the Springboks won in away matches before big crowds and it looks as though the South African fans are slowly but surely allowed back at the stadiums, although in small numbers for now, since the start of COVID-19.
Sadly, the Proteas did not reach the semi-finals but, looking at the Springboks, they could have done with an old man or two in their line-up. Many fans were unhappy that Faf du Plessis and AB de Villiers, both 37 years of age, and the 42-year-old Imran Tahir were not picked for the T20 World Cup.
It was one of the old men in the Springboks’ squad, 34-year-old Frans Steyn, who was the star of the show in the victory over Wales.
Steyn was deservedly named as the man of the match, after a brilliant performance in difficult playing conditions as the replacement full-back.
The other old man, Duane Vermeulen (35), also delivered another solid performance and remember that the 37-year-old Morné Steyn fulfilled a valuable role in the series win against the British and Irish Lions.
I am surprised that the 37-year-old scrum-half Ruan Pienaar is not in the Springbok squad. He has been in excellent form and his tactical kicking would have been way better than what the Boks dished up against Wales.
While the national big three kept us on our toes, things are not going that well with the Bay’s Big Three – the Warriors, the Chilli Boys and the Elephants. The poor batting of the Warriors cost them dearly in the four-day series and the Chilli Boys are not looking good in that dreaded promotion-regulation zone.
The Eastern Province Rugby Union has asked sub-unions, clubs and schools to put names forward of players they feel have what it takes to represent the Elephants.
Really? Every sub-union, club or school that has a decent official in its midst will flood the union with names but I guess you never know, you might find an old man of two who makes a huge difference as the Springboks did.