It took me an hour to get from Epping to my home in Ottery and off to the Cape Town Stadium on Tuesday to be a part of the massive fixture.
Most of that time was spent in the crazy traffic on the N2 and into the stadium precinct. It took some doing to not lose it. I can’t say the same for the taxi drivers who started creating routes that didn’t exist to beat the congestion.
Thankfully, I arrived at the stadium with the little sanity I have intact. It was worth it though.
By the time I got to the Stadium the match was 30 minutes in and Pirates was 2-0 ahead, as a season ticket holder I could not get a seat in block 116 because the block was fill with AjaxCTfans and Pirates fans alikes which I expected. The main grand stand was packed with people of Cape Town eager to support their clubs.
Ajax Cape Town didn’t disappoint as they lost 2-1 to start their life in the big league at home. The team played well and struggled to find the back of the net was the sentiment from the stands.
Shout out to Nathan Paulse for scoring 2 goals in two league fixtures.
But for me that wasn’t the best part of the night, it was the atmosphere at the stadium. Although Cape Town came out to support mostly the Sea Robbers. But that Ajax ingrained itself to the community as a fighting club and a team of character.
What caught my eye was the number of fans wearing Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi Sundowns’ jerseys backing Ajax Cape Town, in the absence of a team of their own.
If Ajax Cape Town won over that crowd, it would be easy to get 10 000 fans for every home game this season. They’re almost there as they now enjoy good support from the students, Cape Flats and township communities and holiday makers to the Mother City.
I feel clubs aren’t feeding off this patriotism and a sense of community enough. Trying to compete with the likes of Chiefs, Pirates and Sundowns is a tough task. So give fans what those teams can’t give them, especially when you’re outside of Gauteng, sell them a sense of belonging which they would get by backing a local team.
Even if it’s to be their second team. That would go a long way towards improving attendance at our matches.