Rude awakening for sleepy dorp

Karabo Tamenti from Mafikeng wanted to call home but he got no response.

Karabo Tamenti from Mafikeng wanted to call home but he got no response.

Tamenti's favourite team, Kaizer Chiefs, had just bitten the dust.

"I felt empty because I had thought the monopoly that our rivals (Orlando Pirates) had on us in the pre-season was manifesting itself into a habit," he said.

But Tamenti could not relate his anguish to his wife because the cellphone network was over-subscribed throughout Mmabatho. The throngs of people who came from all over the county to attend the 22nd Telkom Charity Cup did not make matters easier with their holier-than-thou attitudes.

The crowds had started trickling into the sleepy dorpie as early as Friday at dusk when their vehicles made traffic choc-a-block. Drivers with GP registrations tried to outdo each other by overtaking on the barrier line, causing havoc.

The motorists and their companions, who were dressed to the nines, then turned Mmabatho into a frenzy of bashes with music at high decibel levels as they found the nonexistence of entertainment centres conforming to their high tastes.

Bars, bottle-stores and shebeens did a roaring trade as they opened until the ungodly hours of the morning.

Come Saturday and the stragglers - ranging from hawkers to youngsters who wanted vantage points on the stands - made their way to Mafikeng stadium as early as 5.30am.

By 9am many fans had already made their way into the behemoth of a stadium while multitudes were still struggling to negotiate their way into the venue by the time Platinum Stars and Bloemfontein Celtic kicked off proceedings at 10am.

There was food and booze galore at the hospitality tents inside the venue as the who's who mingled with the hoi polloi.

Phunya Selesele ensured that their myriad supporters, waving green and white balloons, were treated to a soccer exhibition as they tore Stars apart.

A Bucs fan who earlier was seen displaying a placard written "God Bless our lunch - Chiefs", had another for the Celtic game. The latter message read "God bless our sapper (sic) - Celtic".

Instead, Celtic toyed around with Pirates before beating them on penalties.