BAFANA Bafana sent journalists a dummy when they arrived in Bloemfontein on Thursday and interestingly the team management did not see any thing untoward about this.
They should be ashamed of themselves.
This writer was made to drive to the airport for the interviews with Bafana that never took place.
I had been advised by one of the team security personnel to go to the airport. He said the players would not be interviewed at the hotel, which was also coincidentally, where I was booked.
In fact, journalists at the airport did not even see the players as they quietly left the airport using the bus that was parked at the back. What a treatment?
We had to return to the hotel where I confronted the team security man who had advised us to go to the airport for the interviews.
Instead of being embarrassed he unashamedly told me that Bafana treated us accordingly because we are a nuisance to the players.
I preferred not to argue with him. I thought quickly that the time is opportune for Safa to organise management courses for people who handle Bafana for matches because the 2010 World Cup is just around the corner. Please Safa do this immediately after the Confederations Cup to avoid further embarrassment.
Bafana management treats us like foreigners in our own country. They have created a wrong impression to the players about us. I think some of them see us as a bunch of journalists who are hellbent to destroy them.
We are not and we will never be. Our love and support for Bafana is unconditional and we will continue to rally behind the team just like we do with other national squads.
The Bafana media personnel were not considerate to my request on Thursday. I asked them to organise interviews for me with the players at the hotel but they did not budge. We were told the interviews will only be conducted after the evening training session at Seisa Ramabodu Stadium.
On top of that, Bafana made our stay at the hotel a nightmare - we were looked with suspicion wherever we moved towards the players direction.
Egypt and Iraq stayed at this hotel before Bafana arrived and we were treated nicely. How nice it was to see Egyptian journalists and other members of the media from elsewhere easily interacting with Egypt players. Mind you they are the champions of Africa.
What is happening in the Bafana Bafana camp is the sharp contrast to the era of Clive Barker who used to invite journalists to freely interact with the players.
To Bafana management: we are stakeholders of our national team and we both need each other. We should collaborate for the sake of the success of the team. Our best wishes for the semis on Wednesday.