A player in action on a Playstation 4. Photo: safa.net
A player in action on a Playstation 4. Photo: safa.net

SA soccer turning to online gaming to keep players sharp during lockdown

By ANA Time of article published Apr 20, 2020

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JOHANNESBURG - South Africa has been invited to participate in Fifa’s inaugural eNations Stay and Play Cup which will pit some of the world’s top gamers playing with top footballers globally.

Fifa with their partner Electronic Arts (EA Sports) have created an online competition for nations during the lockdown affecting most countries whose competitions have been suspended.

In the launch event, that will kick-off on Tuesday, South Africa’s team, known as eBafana Bafana, will comprise of Bafana Bafana and Mamelodi Sundowns player Sibusiso Vilakazi, Proteas fast bowler Kagiso Rabada, musician Cassper Nyovest and gamer, Thabo Moloi.

The Fifa eNations Stay and Play Cup is designed to encourage players and fans to stay at home during the Covid-19 pandemic and South Africa is one of the countries invited by the world governing body to participate. This is also done to support World Health Organisation (WHO) in their fight against the corona virus.

The tournament has 40 nations broken down in three sections by time zones and the central section with 25 countries from Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

The winners of each section will win a prize money donation awarded to their chosen national charity organisation fighting Covid-19. With its longstanding partnership with SA Football Association (Safa), the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund (NMCF) has been chosen as team South Africa’s charity of choice.

South African gamers are uniting online to play for a good cause. Photo: Glenn Kisela

Safa president Danny Jordaan said all players and fans must stay safe during this period.

“We are hoping to add the voice in the fight against the corona virus by joining Fifa to drive the message of staying at home during this lockdown. The representatives must feel the same pride as members of our other national teams and have fun while they are spreading the message of observing the lockdown regulations to keep safe,” said Jordan.

South Africa’s opening match is on Tuesday at 5pm against the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and interested fans can follow the action on digital platforms with highlights the following day on SuperSport. 

African News Agency (ANA)

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