The three talented players entertained millions with their skills, but their alcohol abuse problem derailed their careers and stunted their growth. Mahlangu, a notorious drinker during his playing days, delivered a moving speech on Thursday at Diageo’s offices in Midrand during the company’s Drive Dry campaign to promote responsible drinking and fighting the scourge of drunk driving.
Mahlangu explained that he grew up in a family of alcoholics where he witnessed his father abuse his mother. For him, alcohol was an escape, a way to forget the trouble at home. But his escape ended up being his crutch even when his life was better after signing a contract with Kaizer Chiefs.
Mahlangu’s alcohol abuse and drug addiction short-lived his career. But he found a way to bounce back and live a clean life. He now uses his tale to caution players against the problem, but despite that there are still players who struggle with alcohol abuse.
“It’s lack of focus and also forgetting too quick and too fast,” Golden Arrows coach Steve Komphela said.