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June 30, 2009

We’re ready for 2010!

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Ke nako – It’s time. Photo courtesy Shine 2010

And so we did it, South Africa hosted the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup ™ with far more compliments offered than apologies given. 

Sure there were a few stumbling blocks along the way (depending which park and ride you used) but there is no doubt that we have paved the way to deliver a 2010 World Cup ™ which is set to be one of the most exciting, cosmopolitan and authentically South African sporting events and Football World Cups ever.

Over the past few centuries South Africa has unmistakeably demonstrated its ability to not only learn and grow but to deliver on its promises. We are a nation that strives to improve, we foster a culture which strives to grow and our Proudly South African youth are indeed “alive with possibility”.

As always, the greatest events draw the biggest sceptics. So if you were one of the unfortunate few who spent the opening ceremony biting your tongue while some guy who thinks it’s classy to put up hanging dice in his double-cab tried to convince you that South Africa will never be ready for the World Cup™ … well then, well done for not karate chopping him in the head with a vuvuzela.

The Confederations Cup™ has seen some of the highest sporting audiences in South Africa over recent years, exceeding the 4.2-million audience average over the Rugby World Cup in 2007, with local audience ratings peaking at 5.2-million viewers during the South Africa vs New Zealand match alone, and international viewership not far behind. Could we ask for a better advertisement?

Fair enough, the football at the opening ceremony may have caused a few people to think that they had suddenly contracted narcolepsy, but how far we have come!

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Photo courtesy Chris Kirchhoff

By the time 2010 rolls round, we will no longer have to explain why the crowd goes “BOO!” every time Booth touches the ball, broadcasters will have figured out how to compensate for the drone of the vuvuzela, and by the way our national team played against Brazil and Spain, we no doubt have some spectacular football to come.

Our stadiums are on track, our service industry is on the cusp of readiness and the South African public is waking up to the fact that 2010 is just around the corner. If you are having a panic about our readiness, you are reading the wrong papers. 

Surprised that we pulled it off? Surprised our team has played so well? Well, we’ve done it, South Africa! Ke nako! It’s time we as a country started to blow our own vuvuzelas!

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