Cry, my beloved country...

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by Vo2, Nov 18, 2002.

  1. Vo2

    Vo2 Member

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    I see no-one here wants to dare say anything about what happened over in Scotland this weekend, but I got this article off iafrica.com. I think it sums it up quite accurately: :'(<br /><br /><br />DAN'S WORLD<br />Sinking in uncharted waters <br /><br />Scotland isn't even a real country. Technically, it falls under the rule of England, and competes in many sports as part of the United Kingdom. So, in effect, we lost to a province of England, a province where the locals speak a rough hybrid of English and consider a sheep's stomach to be a delicacy. (Scots appearing on television should have subtitles. The woman on Sky News last night being interviewed about her home being flooded was completely unintelligible.)<br /><br /><br />I become particularly malicious and cynical at times like this, and make no apology for it. Seeing the woman standing in a foot of water was the only bit of joy I could drag out of anything Scottish all weekend. I hoped fervently that the cloud responsible had formed somewhere over Johannesburg before migrating north (a well-established South African phenomenon), and that many more were on their way to join it.<br /><br />Not that I have anything against the Scots, mind. It is just my way of dealing with Saturday. Marseille was a one-off aberration, never to be repeated. Scotland was the start of the rejuvenation, the beginning of the new wave of Springbok rugby that was surely on its way. And then Murrayfield.<br /><br />My doctor advised me not to talk about rugby for at least a week. But my doctor has also advised me against beer and red meat, and so I treat his advice with a disdain I am forced to admit is creeping into my appreciation of our national rugby team. I am a balanced man. I concede that victory is not always achievable, that defeat is something I must accept from time to time. But it is not the defeat that concerns me so much as the manner thereof.<br /><br />In times of old, battlefields determined the fate of nations, warriors clashing in defence of the pride of their people. Now, unless you are George Bush, declaring war is an option most try and avoid; the sporting arena is where the battle takes place. And that, as the non-sports fan fails to understand, is why a rugby match can take on such significance. And why, in turn, so many of us bear deep emotional scars on the back of Saturday.<br /><br />The Springboks were helpless. Clueless. Impotent, even. Sure, the television referee may have made two questionable decisions (there is obviously a secret underground camera buried in the try zone at Murrayfield, a camera to which only the television match official has access). But let that not take away from the nature of the defeat. Not one player - not one single player - looked remotely comfortable in a rugby jersey on Saturday, the same rugby jersey that once struck terror into the hearts of opposition players, rather than a welcoming appreciation of an imminent victory.<br /><br />On a weekend in which even the England cricket team managed to fight back and achieve a scrap of respectability, the Boks stand out as the glaring omission on the winner's podium from the weekend of sport. They are a spectre of a once great side, clinging on to the last remaining shreds of a reputation they are doing their best to shed. The Boks have been upset before, but always the voices of optimistic revival have been louder than the voices of dread. Such optimism has been reduced to barely a whisper; even the Springbok camp is battling to muster a collective word of inspiration.<br /><br />The team are now in London, as large a satellite of South Africa as can be found outside of our borders. But where before a welcoming minority would have swept the team into Twickenham on a wave of immigrant support, a new experience awaits. Green and gold clad the supporters may be, but unconditional backing has been replaced by an uncertain hesitancy. The Springboks are in hitherto uncharted waters, and the South African fan is understandably uncomfortable with the new direction taken. The good ship Springbok is taking on water, and no one seems able to pinpoint the leak.<br /><br />I do not know why the Springboks are playing as they are. I toy with the ridiculous - pre-match alien abduction, for instance, or a cunning attempt to lure the rest of the world into a false sense of security before the World Cup. But I can not imagine that an alien race with the intelligence to perfect space travel would have a desire to select the Boks as their guinea pigs, just as any sign of cunning has been markedly absent from the team's play thus far on tour. I could call for resignations and changes, blame any number of people or factors, canvas desperately for support for a new game plan, attitude, approach to training. But ultimately it is out of my hands. It is up to the team now.<br /><br />The father of an old girlfriend of mine used to shed tears when the Springboks lost. I shudder to think what state he is in now. (He also had a daughter who sat through an entire rugby match with me, and afterwards told me how much she loved to watch Jonty Rhodes play. I cringed with reflected embarrassment then; what I wouldn't give now for such blissful ignorance.) Indeed, I shudder to envisage the collective state of our rugby-supporting population. And I am truly terrified about Twickenham. Jonathan Davies, the former Welsh star, has said that he expects England to comfortably put 40 points past the Boks. I pray that he is wrong, just as I pray that some divine metamorphosis will sweep over the South African camp this week. But where before I would have dismissed Davies as a raving lunatic (as one usually does with the Welsh), the evidence in his favour is simply too overwhelming. If we lost by 15 points to one of the provinces, the full side - fresh from conquering Australia and New Zealand - holds a terror of a nature I am doing my utmost not to contemplate.
     
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  2. Rhodent

    Rhodent New Member

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    What is this about. As we all know Saturday never happened and all records of it have been wiped from the history books. :'( :'( :'(
     
  3. Vo2

    Vo2 Member

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    If only it was true... :-[
     
  4. Lazarus-g

    Lazarus-g New Member

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    Isn't the score Northen hemisphere 5 1/2 Southern hemisphere 1/2 ;D so don't feel to bad about being a springbok.<br /><br />I do have one thing to say though the referee was )<br /><br />Still you SH boys might get back some pride next saturday because Wales have got the All Blacks and until the ref blows his whistle to start the game I'll have some hope in my hart. ;)
     
  5. Vo2

    Vo2 Member

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    The latest rumour is that the Boks are sandbagging, and I have to agree only because I can't think of any other excuse. There is no other way for us to explain what happened on Saturday. ???<br /><br />If I were a gambling man, I'd put a 1000 bucks on the Bokke for victory this Saturday. Imagine the odds I can get! 1:70?
     
  6. Mampara

    Mampara New Member

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    Important notice<br /> <br />Springboks versus England game Sat 23 November, originally to be screened on M-Net Supersport has been moved to Cartoon Network...
     
  7. Vo2

    Vo2 Member

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    Hahaha ;D Brilliant!
     
  8. Ronnie

    Ronnie New Member

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    Anthrax scare:<br />EDINBURGH (AP) --<br />Springbok rugby practice was delayed nearly two hours last week after a player reported finding an unknown white powdery substance on the practice field. Head coach Strauli immediately suspended practice while police and federal investigators were called to investigate. After a complete analysis, Scotland Yard forensic experts determined that the white substance unknown to players was the try line. Practice was resumed after special agents decided the team was unlikely to encounter the substance again. (SAPA)<br />
     
  9. Vo2

    Vo2 Member

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    ;D ;D Nice one Ronnie!
     
  10. Eldron

    Eldron New Member

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    The big question is: do we watch the rugby this weekend?<br /><br />I have a feeling our dismal form will continue and 80 minutes of rugby will have my heart going worse than a one legged sprint interval up Hekpoort (serious climb for the non saffers).<br /><br />The worst part is I've recently returned from a stint at our UK office. My inbox was flooded after our ass whoopping by Scotland - can you imagine Mondays inbow.<br /><br />Oh woe is SA Rugby.....
     
  11. Jaco

    Jaco New Member

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    the ligther side ... if any ...
     
  12. Lazarus-g

    Lazarus-g New Member

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    I get the idea :) but is there any chance of a translation.<br />
     
  13. Vo2

    Vo2 Member

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    ;D Laz, it says:<br /><br />&quot;No, it's not the woman fleeing from Afghanistan. It's the Springbucks back from overseas&quot;<br /><br />
     
  14. Lazarus-g

    Lazarus-g New Member

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