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2011 sport highlights

Sport

As we bid farewell to 2011 and welcome another new year, we look back at some sporting highlights when our sports teams flew the flag high in various sporting codes.

International events where South African teams participated include the Cricket World Cup played in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and India. Although the Proteas didn’t win the cup, they gave their all and did us proud. The national netball team, also known as Amantombazane, represented South Africa at the World Netball Championships in Singapore in July.

This was followed by the All Africa Games, which took place in Mozambique in September where South Africa collected gold and silver medals in different codes including swimming.

For the first time in the history of women’s football, the team affectionately known as Banyana Banyana qualified for the Olympics and will head to London next year where the 2012 Olympics are held. Sadly, the same cannot be said about their male counterparts, Bafana Bafana, who lost out on qualifying for the 2012 African Cup of Nations in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon by a whisker of one point.

The Springbok rugby team performed well in the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand. Although they lost by only two points against Australia in the semi-finals, they won all their other games and received a heroes’ welcome on their return.

Rugby World Cup: South Africa's Fourie du Preez, front left, is pursued by four Australian players as he tries to break free during the semi final match in New Zealand.
Swimming - All Africa Games: Chad le Clos, left, and Neil Watson on the second day finals of the 10th All Africa Games, which was held in Maputo, Mozambique from 3 to 18 September. Last month, Le Clos became the third South African to win the Fina/Arena Swimming World Cup championship title
World Netball Championships: South Africa’s Claudia Basson and Jamaica’s Malysha Kelly in action during a netball match between Jamaica and South Africa at the Mission Foods World Netball Championship 2011 held at the Indoor Stadium in Singapore
Soccer - All Africa Games: Soccer final between the under-23 teams of South Africa and Ghana at the All Africa Games.
Women’s Soccer: Banyana Banyana super striker Noko ‘Beep Beep’ Matlou holds off an Ethiopian defender on her way to scoring a hat-trick of goals as Banyana Banyana won 3-0 in an Olympic Qualifier
Soccer: Yaya Toure of Ivory Coast attempts to regain possession as Kagisho Dikgacoi and Daylon Claasen of South Africa hold him off
Cricket: South Africa vs Australia on the third day of the one-day International in South Africa