Photo: Sihle Mlambo.

Johannesburg - Marc Batchelor's brother Warren, and his gardener and friend, Pexy Nyirongo, wept as the hearse carrying the murdered former footballer’s body arrived at The Crossing Church in Midrand. 

Nyirongo was with the slain former footballer when gunmen opened fired, fatally wounding the footballer, known to friends as ‘Batch’. 

Nyirongo, along with Warren, were among the six pallbearers and were seen crying as Batchelor's body entered the procession in song. 

A crowd of about 250 people, including former footballers Mark Williams, Pollen Ndlanya and Neil Tovey were also seen. 

Pastor Tony Sivewright, who was conducting the service, said he had been a member of the church for four years. He said of Batchelor: “I'm not going to say he was good, Batch was bad, like you, like me,” he said. 

He recalled how Batchelor used to double park at the church, irking car attendants, whom he said he always told to relax. 

Sivewright said he did not know why he was murdered, but he said “maybe one day we will know”. 

Photo: Sihle Mlambo.

He said he lived life with “a bit of mystery” - and he said Batchelor was an ardent attendant of church who begged for mercy every week. 

“I'm thankful I had a small part to play in his quest for redemption. He is at a place now where there's is no more fighting, no more searching, no more proving himself, he's at peace,” he said.