This past weekend, I went down to Rustenburg in South Africa to catch an Africa Cup of Nations match. Nigeria was playing Ivory Coast for a place in the semi finals. It was my first time to attend a live football match featuring national teams, unfortunately I missed the opportunity to watch the World Cup games in 2010.
A local bus company has a bus service that takes fans from Botswana to the stadium and back the same day. To be honest I was a little nervous going there having heard all sorts of stories about crime in South Africa, but I was quite impressed with how everything was organised. There was a lot of security and all fans were very well behaved. Everyone was friendly and in a good mood. Even the rain showers that fell for about 5-10 minutes couldn’t dampen our spirits.
And it is true what they say, sport brings people together! We met people of all races and ages, all sporting their craziest fan garb or just wearing big smiles on their faces.
As for the match, it was quite fun to watch. Nigeria scored 2 goals while Ivory Coast scored 1.
Given the exciting atmosphere I couldn’t help but get into the football and caught myself yelling at players sometimes which is a stark contrast to how I usually react to football matches. I never give more than 20 minutes of my time to a football game on TV save for special occasions like world cup matches involving African teams.
And being the girl I am, the highlight of the match for me was being part of a Mexican wave!!! Yes I am easy to please. I had such a good time I’d definitely go again! Nothing quite like watching the beautiful game live!