Three weeks ago as Bafana Bafana jetted off to the Africa Cup of Nations, we urged the nation to get behind the boys and let them do their thing on the pitch.
At the time, we reminded South Africans that despite seeing little success in recent years, the national football side was as deserving of support as its Springbok rugby counterpart, or the Proteas and Banyana Banyana.
One thing that has been proven time and again is that sports unite South Africans of all ages, races and economic standing.
On Tuesday under the night sky in Ivory Coast, Bafana Bafana pulled off one of their most heroic performances to date, defeating African top-ranked side Morocco, the miracle team of the recent Fifa World Cup in Qatar, where they reached the semi-finals.
Tuesday’s victory was a moment to remember for coach Hugo Broos and the South African national team, who have had to endure criticism before the first ball of the tournament was even kicked.
The inconsistent Bafana have not been the most supported team in the country. Captain and goalie Ronwen Williams once famously spoke of the pain of knowing that they had no national backing whenever they pulled on the green and gold national strip.
Already, the critics were quick to point out on Wednesday that the team was made up of mostly Mamelodi Sundowns players, but those players are South African and eligible to play for the national side.
Others spoke of the fact that the honeymoon would be over and Bafana would lose the next game. All this talk is negative and counterproductive.
Bafana will be in action again on Saturday night, where they will take on Cape Verde in the quarters, and we hope the boys have now done enough to convince the naysayers that they are worthy of being supported here at home.
Let us paint the country green and gold this Friday like we do during other great sporting events.
Bafana Bafana need all 61 million of us to rally behind them if they are to entertain any hopes of bringing the Afcon trophy home.
Win or lose, let us stand behind our national teams.