Du­misani’s an­tics di­vert us from the fact that South Africa wasn’t good enough

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - SPORT -

RAS DU­MISANI is now the most fa­mous liv­ing reg­gae singer in the world, given that Bob Mar­ley and Lucky Dube have sadly passed on.

The Rasta­far­ian was clearly highly Se­lassie when he sang, if I can call it that, the na­tional an­them in Toulouse.

I was also in­trigued by his “band”, which in­cluded a white irie oke with a mon­strous hat who oc­ca­sion­ally hit the drum in front of him at com­pletely ran­dom mo­ments.

Ras’s dis­jointed (or maybe too jointed) ef­fort sym­bol­ised an atro­cious week for South African sport.

For a tired rugby team to lose in Toulouse was no dis­grace – the mer­cu­rial French al­ways seem to per­form bet­ter away from Paris and were clearly up for the oc­ca­sion – but three Spring­bok de­feats in­side eight days is, as far as I can track, un­prece­dented.

We bang on about the qual­ity of the Cur­rie Cup and the depth in our game but that sud­denly rings a bit hol­low.

In­creas­ingly this Bok side starts to look like the Aus­tralian cricket team five years ago. Aussie ad­min­is­tra­tors at that time waxed lyri­cal about their depth of tal­ent.

English county sides were packed (Sara­cens-like) with their re­jects and they claimed the in­ten­sity of their do­mes­tic game would en­sure a sup­ply of play­ers to con­tinue their dom­i­na­tion.

In re­al­ity the run was fun­da­men­tally re­liant on the cos­mic align­ment of three great stars, and once Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath and Adam Gilchrist were gone, Ricky Ponting’s team came back to the pack. Their re­place­ments proved solid rather than mag­i­cal.

For Warne, McGrath and Gilchrist read Fourie du Preez, Vic­tor Mat­field and John Smit. Each, in their own way, is in­com­pa­ra­ble and ir­re­place­able. If they dis­ap­pear or strug­gle then the world cup will not be re­tained. As Tim Noakes keeps point­ing out, all three should have been in cot­ton wool at this stage of the sea­son.

Last Fri­day there was an­other butch­ery job to ri­val Du­misani’s when Eoin Mor­gan trashed the much-vaunted Protea bowl­ing at­tack at the Wan­der­ers. Too much at­ten­tion was fo­cused on the Duck­worthLewis cock-up and not enough on the mon­strous to­tal the Proteas were chas­ing.

The ex­plo­sive ri­poste from Loots Bos­man and Graeme Smith on Sun­day could not com­pen­sate for the shock of see­ing Eng­land do­ing such dam­age for the sec­ond time in suc­ces­sion (Owais Shah and Mor­gan flogged us in the Cham­pi­ons Tro­phy). Mickey Arthur’s magic bowl­ing for­mula comes un­stuck once the spin­ners are rum­bled, leav­ing Al­bie Morkel ex­posed. The Proteas looked like the Boks when the Fourie/Ha­bana kick-and- chase rou­tine doesn’t work.

As for Bafana Bafana, dur­ing the week they con­trived an­other three hours without scor­ing a goal, mak­ing it one, against mighty Mada­gas­car, in seven matches.

No­body ex­pects mir­a­cles (one Benni head­line said “Mes­si­ahs Don’t Have Boeps”) but surely some­one in a South African shirt can Bulge The Old Onion Bag, as the ex­e­crable Tommy Smyth would say on ESPN.

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