Spotlight on African Nations tourney

Sello Rabothata

Sello Rabothata

Africa is busy at play while Amabinneplaas are languishing at home and twiddling their thumbs.

The occasion, which is not receiving as much publicity as it should, is the first African Nations Championship taking place in the Ivory Coast.

Unlike with the CAF Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon), this tournament of home-based players in national teams has not attracted the eyes of South Africans as Amabinneplaas failed to qualify.

Bafana Bafana also failed to qualify for the Afcon scheduled for Angola next year.

But the African Soccer Television show saw the importance of the event that kicked off this week and will screen highlights on SABC1 Sport's Laduma programme on Sunday at 2.30pm.

Hosts Ivory Coast slumped to a shock 3-0 defeat to Zambia in Abidjan on Sunday as the first African Nations Championship got off to a dramatic start.

The striker who destroyed Ivorian dreams of a winning start in Group A before a packed 35000 crowd at Felix Houphouet-Boigny Stadium almost missed the competition for African footballers playing in their land of birth.

Hat-trick hero Given Singuluma only returned to Zambia in midweek from Finland where he had successful trials with FC Haka, who he is set to join after the two-week tournament.

Highlights from three other Chan games will also be part of the package.

ASTV also attended the Malawi Super League Awards for 2008.

The show also continues with the 2010 "We are ready" campaign this week, speaking to Sibongile Mazibuko of the Johannesburg City Council and Barbara Creecy, Gauteng MEC for sports, arts and culture. - Additional reporting by Sapa-AFP