I am so sick of everyone playing the racism card in South African sport, especially when it comes to rugby!!! Ok, I know we have spoken about rugby a lot on Phuthu over the last few days, but there are actually two and a half rugby fans in the office now, so…
Surely by now, 15 years after apartheid was abolished, we should have moved past the whole racism thing? Affirmative action was necessary and completely justified in order to get things back on track, but it was supposed to be over after 10 years. The focus should now be on skills and abilities, not on skin colour.
Springbok coach Peter de Villiers (yes, the same guy who allegedly starred in a sex video… eish! Who would want to see that?) has accused SA rugby fans of booing Ricky Januarie during Saturday’s Lions match because he is coloured. Ricky was booed after a knock-on he made at a critical moment. Let’s face it people; any player will be booed for doing the same thing – no matter what colour he is! In fact, Frans Steyn was booed as well on Saturday when he made a mistake. And he is white. But no one said that his boo was a racist boo.
Peter de Villiers told News 24 that Ricky “made one mistake on Saturday, but so did other players. What I have learnt in South Africa is the following; if you take your car to a garage to be repaired and the owner is black and he doesn’t do a good job, you will never take it back there again. But if the owner is white and the garage makes a mistake, people say, never mind, he made a mistake and will take it back again.” Have you ever heard anything so ridiculous in your life? All about race, not skills. I would personally take my car to a mechanic because I’m happy with his work, not because of the colour of his skin. And for the record, I took my car to a white mechanic and he did a k*k job. I never went back. My car is now serviced by a Portuguese man on the Bluff. So there!
The fact is that Ricky hasn’t been performing this season, and maybe he simply does not deserve to be a Springbok scrumhalf because of that – not because of the colour of his skin! And while I’m at it, what about Stefan Terblanche? Stefan has continuously been on top form this season, but he didn’t get to play on Saturday. Is that because he is white?
Take a look at our Beast (Mtawarira). The whole nation salutes him because he is a great player, not because of the colour of his skin. When he comes onto the field or gets the ball, every single supporter – black, white, Indian and coloured – shouts “Beeeaaaaast!” On Saturday, did anyone complain about the Beast, Pietersen and Habana? No. Simply because they played well.
An anonymous Lions supporter commented on the situation: “At last, we have on our side the ultimate weapon against Springbok rugby: Pieter de Villiers. Thank you so much!” Is this really how we want the world to see us? Sport seems to no longer be about sport, but about politics. Politics and race. As soon as anyone says anything negative about a player of colour, instantly it is all about his colour and not his ability to play the game. The sooner we can all forget about the colour thing, the better this country will be off. And the same goes for our sport in general. Come ooooooooon. Let’s move on!