Springbok captain Siya Kolisi signs autographs at St Stithians College in Johannesburg this week. Photo: Christiaan Kotze/BackpagePix

DURBAN – Twas a lovely autumnal arvie, overlooking Harris Field on my old stomping grounds in Hillcrest, at the picturesque Highbury Preparatory School.

I sat and pondered the weekend’s sporting results, whilst the boys did their thing, in the annual cross-country race.

Oh wow, how I hated this day in the years 1991 to 1995, but it was necessary as it built character for each of the boys for later in life. And as the boys’ cross-country skipper said in his speech, “We are all winners today.” Well done Acutts House on a stellar and close victory over my former house, Duffs.

On the back of long-distance running, let us give a shout-out to those who are tackling the ultimate marathon the world has ever seen. 

The Comrades has a new finish, at the iconic Moses Mabhida Stadium. It just keeps getting better, I tell you – Dirtbin, WE LOVE YOU!

It’s also match point in The French Open, Championnats Internationaux de France de Tennis, also called Roland-Garros.

The finales are this weekend, both men and women. No need to talk about the men, as it’s Game, Set, Match. Let’s congratulate Rafa on his 11th title. Merci, Rafa Nadal, il plaisit de vous regarder, Monsieur Nadal (It is a pleasure watching you, Mr Nadal).

The women’s final is where it’s at kids, with this right here Sangoma’s favourite picks who played against each other in the semis izolo – Garbine Muguruza and Simona Halep. It should have been a banger of a match, but unfortunately, at the time of writing, the first ball had not yet been struck.

So, let’s say the world number 1 is the pick to win and I see Sloane Stephens being her opponent.

But, even if it isn’t, SaneIe Tshabalala, the Sports Sangoma’s call is Halep to collect this title, whomever she may play (shout-out G-Dogg on the correct English).

On to the small matter of Siyamthanda Kolisi, our new Springbok captain, who is captaining his first Test against the almighty Eddie Jones’ England. 

This is a pivotal moment in South African rugby and, yes, it’s OUR skipper and his men vs the most revered oval-ball coach on the scene at the minute. 

The last time I actually was a true Bok supporter was over a decade ago (long story... It will need a beer and a steak to get that full story out of me, if anyone really wants the waarheid...) and I’m proud to say I will be there to witness it, even though I am still soeking a ticket. Any volunteers out there?

Getting a ticket is like pulling fish teeth, I tell you... A friend messaged me saying a whole Sangoma without a ticket... fair point!

I say go for our mighty Green and Gold to sneak it, perhaps with a drop goal to give us some sort of nostalgic memories of ’95. 

It may help mend this country’s issues around race, rugby and all things dear to our hearts. It might even unite us – even if for a while. We need it.

Last thing I need is for fellow darkie journos, when walking into the stadium, to have to listen to grown men patronise them by saying “die sokker is môre” or “ek is ’n boer, wat is jy?!”

I too was last at Ellis Park with my sister in the 90s, where we had to spend the last 10 minutes standing in the staircase so we could avoid some Afrikaner from throwing his urine on us.

I’m actually surprised I am going back, but as my mate Barry Barritt said this morning – “It’s the first time in years that I am backing the Boks this weekend.”

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Good Luck Siya and all his manne! @GwijoSquad, sizon’bona phambili (see you ahead). Back the Boks for a sneaky win, and take the handicap of plus if you’re scared, kids.

Then to run through the rest of the rugby results: New Zealand shall win, but France may pick up some connie and try get one game in the three-match series. Japan to chow Italy in what should be a great match first-up on Saturday. 

The ruck of the Irish to take down the Aussies Down Under, we hope, and the Pumas to take a chunk out of the Welsh sheep late on Saturday.

Sanele Sangoma is OUT! I’m off to see my Chilean hombré Javier, so au revoir, my little ones!


The Mercury

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