Luke Alfred and Ian Hawkey’s new book Vuvuzela Dawn details 25 sports stories that shaped democratic SA. Here Alfred reflects on the project, the politics and psychology of winning and losing big. When I was toying with the idea of writing the book that was to become Vuvuzela Dawn, I had in mind writing something worthily commemorative — a big, virtue-signalling whopper about SA sport, in other words. Like other parts of the world, we needed a national sports museum or a hall of sporting fame, I reasoned, and if there was no prospect of this coming to pass, I’d write a book which masqueraded as one. After a couple of rejections from local publishers, I refined the process. How about a book of sporting stories featuring South Africans instead? In this country we love our stories, those smoky tales around the braai, so what better way of smuggling in the mustard of commemoration — to coin a phrase — with the wors and bun of a juicy story? Discussing it with the book’s co-author, Engli...

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