Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Bay United Soccer explained

Who or what is Umlilo ... and why should you care?

The Herald had a cartoon recently where Madam and Eve were working on how to pronounce the name of South Africa’s new president Kgalema Mothlanthe, but it might be more relevant for the Eastern Cape to learn how to pronounce Umlilo and what it means.

Until their big win here against Orlando Pirates week or so ago, I had never heard the word but it’s the nickname for our wunderkids in Port Elizabeth’s Premier Soccer League Team, Bay United – and it’s a safe bet Umlilo will be as well known as the Jumbos or the Warriors come 2010.

“Watsh Umlilo” translates into English as “They're on fire” ... and my colleague Chumani Bambani filled me in with an “Idiot’s Guide to Bay United”.

Captain: Duran Francis (that's him in the white strip)

Coach: Vladislav Heric (that's him, just to the right, wearing red)

Colours: Red for home game, white for away

Home ground: EPRU Stadium (Telkom Park)
Owner: Sipho Pityana

Youngest player: Sherwin Smith, 19, from East London

Top goal scorer last season: Zambian international Linos Chalwe, who scored 11 goals.

Cutest player: That was a tough call for Chumani, who says: “The ladies seem to think that great eye-candy is captain Duran Francis, goalkeeper Arthur Bartman and last season's footballer of the year Gareth Ncaca.”

So, now you know you can impress the guys round the water cooler ... Laduma!

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