- A tribute match in honour of former Orlando Pirates and Bafana Bafana captain Senzo Meyiwa was nearly cancelled after a payment dispute arose
- Former legends and retired footballers refused to take to the field after they were told they would not receive their R10 000 match fee
- Senzo’s father, Sam had to plead with players to continue with the match despite the payment problems
A tribute match in honour of former Bafana Bafana and Orlando Pirates captain Senzo Meyiwa at the King Zwelithini Stadium in Durban was nearly cancelled after a payment dispute arose between organisers and former players.
Former legends of the game, retired PSL players and a couple of current Orlando Pirates players were due to play in an exhibition match but the older players refused to take to the field when organisers informed them they would not be paid for the match.
Disgruntled former players said they were promised R10 000 to play in the match and in some cases, they had cancelled other events and appearance in order to travel to Durban and take part in the match.
Briefly.co.za gathered that Senzo’s father, Sam had to plead with the players to continue with the match despite the payment problems.
Goal.com reported that the organisers said the eThekwini Municipality had initially agreed to sponsor the event but had pulled out at the last minute. This meant the organisers could not afford to pay each of the players their match fees.
Some of Senzo’s former teammates said they did not care about being paid and took part in the match to honour the former captain and his legacy.
Retired Orlando Pirates footballer Lucky Lekgwathi said he personally was not paid and was not promised any payment before the match. He said he took part in the match to honour Senzo and not for financial gain.
His views were echoed by Siyabonga Sagweni, he said it was normal practice in these kinds of matches for players to be remunerated although in this instance it did not matter to him personally.
Sagweni said: “Knowing Senzo as my homeboy, what happened didn’t worry me because money wasn’t a priority anyway. All I wanted to do was show support.”
The founder and organiser of the Senzo Meyiwa Memorial Foundation and matches, Ntokozo Sikhakhane, confirmed that a match fee of around R10 000 was usually paid to those taking part in memorial or tribute matches.
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