June 11, 2010
Bafana Bafana and Mexico entertain Cape Town
The FIFA Fan Fest. Photos by Roy Barford
A Bafana Bafana fan celebrates his team’s goal
Cape Town has been a sea of yellow today, as residents and visitors donned their football tops in support of Bafana Bafana, who did the nation proud by holding Mexico to a 1-1 draw at the opening match of the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ at Soccer City in Soweto.
Although the match was played more than 1 500 kilometres away, the atmosphere in Cape Town was immense, with vuvuzelas blaring and people of many different nations mingling together in the streets.
At the FIFA Fan Fest, some 20 000 people erupted into celebration when Siphiwe Tshabalala scored a scintillating goal to put the hosts into the lead in the 55th minute. Cape Town went silent 24 minutes later when Mexico equalised, but the fans quickly picked themselves up as Bafana Bafana created several opportunities to snatch a win in the dying minutes.
Several months ago, there were fears that Bafana Bafana would be embarrassed during the tournament, given their lowly world ranking and their poor run of results. The team has however gone from strength to strength, and showed some serious courage against the Mexicans, who are ranked 17th in the world. Bafana are currently ranked 85th.
The FIFA Fan Fest is a wonderful place to watch the 2010 FIFA World Cup™, provided you get there early enough. The area closes when capacity is reached, but Cape Town has many other venues where you can watch the matches, which you can read about in our entertainment section.
South Africa may have once been a nation divided along racial lines, but 16 years after democracy, the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ is clearly playing its part in further uniting this wonderful nation.
Visitors to Cape Town are also playing a massive role in contributing to the amazing atmosphere and there is promise that this tournament could become one of the most memorable ever.
If you are reading this from anywhere else in South Africa, please check out our domestic flight specials and get yourself down here as soon as possible!