Forging closer ties

The Eastern Cape provincial government has formed a committee with Safa in the province for closer cooperation on 2010 World Cup matters.

The Eastern Cape provincial government has formed a committee with Safa in the province for closer cooperation on 2010 World Cup matters.

"We realised that there was a big gap between them [Safa] and us," said Noxolo Abraham-Ntantiso, MEC for sports and culture in the province. "We cannot afford slip-ups."

The MEC is happy with the progress of Nelson Mandela Bay Sports Centre in Port Elizabeth.

The stadium, which will cost R1,5 billion, is one of the four new venues that will host the quadrennial soccer spectacle.

Others are Peter Mokaba in Polokwane, Mbombela (Nelspruit), Green Point (Cape Town) and Moses Mabhida (Durban).

"The Nelson Mandela Sports Complex is well on track. Though we were a bit concerned about the heavy rains, everything is fine," Abraham-Ntantiso said.

"All the segments of the roof have already arrived in the country [from Kuwait]. We are confident that it will be ready by March."

A rugby match between the British Lions and a Coastal XV on June 16 is set to be the first match at the new stadium.

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