DARREL BRISTOW-BOVEY: The checkered career of SA's draughts world champ
'I had never heard of Lubabalo Kondlo before this week, when the news broke that he had finally become world champion for the first time'
Ron King calls himself King Ron and trains like a boxer, skipping and running and doing press-ups and power squats and honing his reflexes with table tennis and handball. In his native Barbados he was national sports personality of the year three times and appears on TV adverts and billboards. He’s sponsored by Subaru and Mitsubishi and was given 12,000 square feet of land by his government in recognition of his sporting dominance.
There’s a statue of him outside his old high school. Reggae songs have been written about him. Barbados is not a rich nation, and draughts doesn’t have the profile of cricket, but his nation knows how to reward a hero.
Lubabalo Kondlo doesn’t have sponsorship deals or statues and certainly no one has given him any land. He isn’t even competing in SA colours