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South Africans have made it clear that they want to see the 2009 Confederations Cup being a roaring success by registering in big numbers to serve as volunteers for the event, which will be a dress rehearsal for the 2010 World Cup.
The Local Organising Committee announced when the process to register for the volunteers started on July 15 that they were looking for 5000 South Africans to volunteer for the competition.
But 20040 people had already registered by Friday at 11am to serve as volunteers for the first major Fifa event in South Africa with most coming from Johannesburg.
Johannesburg was leading with 8 890 applications, Rustenburg second on 4629, Tshwane third with 3238 and Mangaung fourth on 2525 applications.
"We are delighted with the overwhelming response to our call for volunteers for the Fifa Confederations Cup," said Danny Jordaan, who is the chief executive of the LOC.
For the World Cup, the LOC will recruit just over 15000 people to serve as volunteers from across the globe.
Billed as the "festival of champions", the 16-game tournament will feature champions of the six confederations, World Cup champions Italy and South Africa as the hosts of the next World Cup, from June 14 to 28.
For the first time in the history of this tournament, there will be prize money of $17,6million (about R127,6 million) with the winners grabbing $3,75 million and runners-up getting $3,25 million.
The teams finishing third and fourth will receive $2,75million and $2,23million. Those finishing fifth to eighth will each receive $1,4 million.
LOC chairman Irvin Khoza said the draw will take place in Sandton, Johannesburg, on November 23.