Updated: Aug 26
All countries and major centres across the globe have been under lockdown since the outbreak of the pandemic in early March 2020. It resulted in events being cancelled, postponed or rescheduled and with the full lockdown regulations in force no sports were played and no spectators permitted.
The attendance at sporting events is still prohibited in most countries. Unlike New Zealand who has recently celebrated 100 days of being Covid-19 free. Their favourite and almost national sport in the form of rugby was the first to host sporting events, with spectators in attendance.
South Africa has also witnessed the return of local football with teams playing in the Nedbank Cup semi-final play-offs. All to the delight and the excitement of local fans, to have football once again being televised on home soil. Some of the local club coaches articulated their frustrations of not having sufficient time to practice and prepare for the return to the game. The lockdown introduced various forms of protocols and regulations to adhere by, which led to adjustments and lower than capacity training sessions.
South Africa managed to record its first major win in MotoGP as recently as 9 August 2020, by the rookie Brad Binder. It was a first for the country and the flag was proudly on display around the track during the lap of honour by the youngster. Indeed a proud moment and congratulations are in order for the champion.
Most sporting codes for both male and female sports made a comeback with intense testing and related safety and preventative measures. Those who tested positive where placed in quarantine and not allowed to participate. More importantly, the sports federations and heads of the codes have been very co-operative by disclosing positive test results and the actions taken to mitigate the spread of the virus. These actions were well received by the public and appreciated.
Recent reports indicate that in reality, the virus will be around in the near future, and also made mention of re-infections and the return of the virus in some countries.
The closed stadia and no spectator rule will probably remain in place for some time; but will not result in sport being placed on hold for months as experienced previously. At least this is the hope of many sporting fans.
It will require adaptability, creativity and agility to adjust to what the world around us has become.