Ticket sharks dead in the water

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

The big game featuring Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs presents a golden opportunity for many people to make money, but turned out to be a black Saturday for many.

This time round, the biggest losers were the "sharks" - people who buy tickets in bulk at the outlets and sell them on match day to make a huge profit.

A PSL match ticket at an official ticket seller cost R20.

Early on Saturday, the "sharks" were selling the tickets for R30 but it was clear their usual jackpot was going to be just a pipe dream for this derby.

The "sharks" soon reverted to the original price around 2.30pm after slicing R10 off just before 3pm to avoid going back home with the tickets.

It is clear that many fans heeded the call to buy tickets early during the week to avoid being victimised by the black market sellers.

Credit to the North West government for going all out to get this game. Business people in that area were smiling from ear to ear after making a profit.

Most bottle store and takeaway owners had to open until 9pm as many people were queueing to purchase whatever they needed.

Even the traffic officers in Mafikeng could not hide their excitement as the derby afforded them long overtime hours.

"I started the job at 7am and will knock off at 9pm. I wish there was a big soccer match here almost every weekend," said one traffic officer.

While some people were on some vain campaign last week, arguing that the derby has lost its spark, thus insinuating that few would bother to watch. To the contrary, the match attracted multitudes of people from Bloemfontein, Cape Town, Durban, Polokwane, Lekazi, Swaziland and Botswana.

But some Batswana football fans fell foul of opportunistic traffic cops near the Lobatse border gate who issued speeding fines to offenders.

Overall, there is little to suggest the derby has lost its spark.