Social butterfly Kodwa will need to keep his eyes on the slippery ball

If recent interviews from the newly appointed Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture Zizi Kodwa are anything to go by, then we could be in deeper trouble than we experienced with the booted Nathi Mthethwa.

The flamboyant former ANC spokesperson made one of his first stops on the popular Marawa Sports Worldwide radio show this past week and his responses and solutions to the country’s sporting problems did not leave us hanging from the chandelier with excitement – in fact, it left us with more questions than answers.

All I can say is that the man has a lot of catching up to do and needs to immerse himself into the world of sports, including arts and culture – maybe with the latter he is a bit covered because of his outgoing personality and him being generally known as a social butterfly. To be honest, his grasp of sporting matters is not up there with the best.

But this is just a political appointment and to judge the former deputy minister of state security before the kick-off whistle is blown would be grossly and rudely unfair. He deserves a chance to prove his detractors, including yours truly, wrong.

Surely he cannot be worse than his predecessors such as Rev Makhenkesi Stofile, the blabbermouth Fikile Mbalula and Mthethwa. The least said about other former sports ministers Thulas Nxesi and Tokozile Xasa, the better – it’s like they were not even there.

For instance, Mthethwa tried to hoodwink the masses with plans to erect a R22-million SA flag that would deepen and foster social cohesion. He also bungled Covid-19 funds for music artists and athletes, which led to a huge outcry. This is not what we want to see.

Kodwa will do well to keep his eyes on the ball. Facilities in the townships and rural areas are appalling, if they exist at all. Transformation in sporting codes such as cricket and rugby is still a pipe dream. There are still huge disparities between women’s and men’s sport. Schools sport in previously disadvantaged areas is at an all-time low. Big federations such as Safa and Cricket SA are not on a good footing – hence their national teams Bafana Bafana and the Proteas are laughing stocks in the bigger scheme of things.

These are some of the challenges Kodwa will be faced with – in football parlance, it’s not going to be a tap-in. He will need to be on his toes for the entire 90 minutes. But Kodwa is a street-smart member of the national executive committee of the ANC, who served as spin-doctor from 2014 to 2017, so he should understand the intricacies of the job at hand. We welcome him on board and hope he has a winning game plan and tactics.

In another matter that has captivated the local sports fraternity, an unknown team in the ABC Motsepe League is causing havoc in the Nedbank Cup.

If there was any team that could add spark to yet another dreadful season, not many would have picked amateur side Dondol Stars FC from Mamelodi in Tshwane. Not only is their name odd, but they also have an unorthodox and uncanny manner of nailing PSL clubs.

They have already pummelled and knocked two PSL giants SuperSport United and AmaZulu out of the Ke Yona Cup.

This is what the Nedbank Cup is known for… we all remember how TS Galaxy, who were campaigning in the first division, made history when they defeated Kaizer Chiefs 1-0 in the final to lift the trophy in 2019.

At some point, Chiefs also fell to minnows Baroka FC but one of the biggest upsets was when Maluti FET College walloped Orlando Pirates 4-1 in 2013.

We hope Dondol continue to brighten up the competition and emulate Galaxy and AmaTuks that reached the finals in 2009.

It has been a boring, one-sided league for some time now.

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