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Soccer Laduma - - Make Your Point - CAPE UMOYA UNITED’S NATHAN PAULSE By Vuyani Joni

Le­gend, you’ve been around the block, so please share some funny sto­ries with our read­ers.

Ha, ha, ha, sure, my man. I have a few sto­ries that are mostly about my for­mer coaches at Ajax Cape Town, where I spent most of my pro­fes­sional foot­ball ca­reer. The first one is about Gor­don Ige­sund when he took over the reins and I was still a young boy try­ing to get into the first team, at the time. I think it was ei­ther the first or sec­ond week of pre-sea­son when I ar­rived a bit late for train­ing at Ikamva. Be­cause I was the only one run­ning late, the coach told the rest of the team to hide some­where at the club’s base so that I couldn’t find any­one when I fi­nally ar­rived. I got there and only saw our kit man­ager (Al­bert Hen­dricks) who told me that the team had gone for a run. He gave me my train­ing kit and told me to chase af­ter the guys. “You’re go­ing to get a heavy fine from the coach, so you bet­ter dress up quickly and chase af­ter the guys,” is what he told me. I was ob­vi­ously pan­ick­ing be­cause I was new in the team and the last thing you want, as a young­ster, is to dis­ap­point any­one. So af­ter get­ting dressed, he gave me the di­rec­tion the team had al­legedly taken, so I got out of Ikamva, turned right and then left at the ro­bots. My man, I ran over the bridge with­out any of my team­mates in sight, ha, ha, ha.

Ha, ha, ha.

JJustt as I was ap­proach­ing hi ththe traf­fic t ffi cir­cle, I heard a car hoot­ing be­hind me. I turned, and guess who was driv­ing be­hind me? It was coach Gor­don and he was laugh­ing at me and told me to hop into his car. He told me I had left the whole team at Ikamva and I just couldn’t be­lieve it, as I was sweat­ing from the run al­ready. We got back at Ikamva and there was ev­ery­one look­ing at me and laugh­ing their hearts out. That was so funny and em­bar­rass­ing be­cause you al­ways want to im­press and the last thing you ex­pect t iis tto bbe made d fun of. To be hon­est with you, since that day I’ve never been late for train­ing and I guess that’s thanks to coach Gor­don, ha, ha, ha.

Ha, ha, ha, good job, coach Gor­don!

An­other story is about b t MMuhsinhi EEr­tu­gral.tl HHa, ha,h ha,h what h t a char­ac­ter! His first stint at Ajax was in 2006 and, in his first six months, we were in­volved in the Telkom Knock­out and reached the fi­nal, where we played now de­funct Sil­ver Stars. We were 3-0 down at half­time, thanks to a Simba Marumo hat-trick. The coach played me and Brent (Carelse) be­hind our lone striker and that was the very first time both of us had played in that po­si­tion, at the same time. So you can imag­ine the con­fu­sion be­cause we were not used to this for­ma­tion. I can tell you, for the en­tire first half, we were not sure who the coach was scream­ing at be­tween us, ha, ha, ha. Coach Muhsin looks a bit weird when he’s an­gry, ha, ha, ha. We were not sure how to play his sys­tem and who he was shout­ing at when he is­sued in­struc­tions. At half­time, un­sur­pris­ingly, he took us both off and that felt so bad.

We can imag­ine.

Af­ter the team left the change room for the start of the sec­ond half, Brent and I were still sit­ting there try­ing to fig­ure out what had just hap­pened. We were so con­fused and an­gry. Af­ter a while, we found the whole sit­u­a­tion so funny and started laugh­ing about it. Can you imag­ine how weird it is to be sit­ting in t the change room and laugh­ing about the game when your team is out there los­ing?

Ha, ha, ha, un­be­liev­able!

Eish, my man, foot­ball will show you things you never knew. There is an­other funny story from around 2003 and 2004 when Ajax was in­volved in the CAF Cham­pi­ons League. We went to Ivory Coast and, af­ter the game, some of the guys went out on a naughty spree, ha, ha, ha. The next morn­ing, as we were about to check out, a few of the ladies, who had some trans­ac­tions with the lads, were stand­ing in the re­cep­tion area with their body­guards de­mand­ing their pay­ment, ha, ha, ha. What had hap­pened was, the guys gave them R20 notes and claimed that it was an equiv­a­lent of 100 US Dol­lars, ha, ha, ha. Upon ver­i­fy­ing the in­for­ma­tion, the ladies brought their body­guards to de­mand the right pay­ment and, at this stage, the en­tire team was in the bus ready to leave. The ladies kept wav­ing and iden­ti­fy­ing the guys who owed them and that was so funny. The guys ended up pay­ing and then we left.

Ha, ha, ha, talk about an iden­tity pa­rade. On that note, let’s leave it there for this week, Langer.

Ha, ha, ha, sure, my man.

“I had left the whole team at Ikamva.”

“The ladies brought their body­guards…”

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