Double decker sports weekend for the Bay

BY SUPPLIED - AUGUST 7, 2014
SPOILT FOR CHOICE - Eezi Fana, ardent EP Kings supporter, is donning both rugby and soccer jerseys this weekend in support of the double showdown this weekend.

THIS weekend Nelson Mandela Bay residents and out-of-town sports fans can look forward to a back-to-back dose of rugby and soccer matches taking place at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth.

On Friday (8 August 2014, 19:00) Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium will host the EP Kings for a ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division match against DHL Western Province.

Then, on Saturday (9 August 2014, 18:00), Nelson Mandela Bay’s new soccer team Chippa United takes on Platinum Stars in a Premier Soccer League (PSL) match – after playing their inaugural game at the Stadium last month.

“The Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium is the first to have secured anchor tenants for both major South African sporting codes, rugby and soccer; also a first for a South African 2010 FIFA World Cup stadium,” said Chantal Du Pisani, CEO of Access Management, stadium operator.

“The city’s investment in a multi-purpose stadium is reaping rewards for both rugby and soccer lovers, and more generally for sports and recreation in the city.  The impact of these events on the local economy cannot be overlooked.

“We are relying on the community to back both events this weekend.  The games promise to be exciting and have been priced affordably so all can enjoy,” she said.

Eezi Fana, much loved and ardent EP Rugby supporter at first had a hard time deciding which game to attend but after paying a surprise visit to the stadium he is throwing his full support behind both teams this weekend.

“I am looking forward to the double showdown – we are really spoilt for choice this weekend. I know both teams have been training extensively and considering their past matches they will definitely give the visitors a run for their money. I am confident in both their performances. As for me, I will be camping at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium the whole weekend and trust that Bay residents will join me” said Fana.

Du Pisani added that there are major soccer and rugby matches and tournaments lined up for remainder of the year. “With just five months remaining of the year the stadium has a fantastic line-up that promises nothing less than maximum sporting entertainment. The soccer season will bring teams such as Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates to the city when the ‘Chilli Boys’ take on these teams at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium,” she said.

The leading international IRB Sevens rugby tournament will also be making its way to the Bay in December.  “With the third leg of the 2014/2015 IRB World Sevens Series five months away, rugby fans can expect exciting matches with the Blitzbokke.  The Cell C Nelson Mandela Bay Sevens tournament will take place on the 13th and 14th of December,” she said.