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Remembering BA’s unsung tough tackling fullback

2023-07-07  Carlos Kambaekwa

Remembering BA’s unsung tough tackling fullback

Without beating about the bush, truth be tol d, Namibian football is honoured to have had the greatest football entity in history in the shape of the mighty Black Africa Football Club. The exciting Gemengde outfit did not only play attractive football, winning the hearts of many, including the neutral fan, but Black Africa dominated domestic football for many years and produced lots of phenomenal athletes. 

Bro ‘Alacatz’ was amongst a group of young footballers that set the local football scene alight with electrifying performances week in and week out. A product of the Roman Catholic Don Bosco Primary Boarding School, holed up in #Goas in the mountainous Erongo region near Karibib, young ‘Alacatz’ started kicking a football at school with his fellow school mates. 

The energetic football crazy boy originally hailed from the city of bright lights (Windhoek) where he honed his football skills in the dusty streets of Katutura township. ‘Alacatz’ got his big break in topflight football when regular Black Africa defender, overlapping fullback Joseph ‘Malaka’ Somseb, was involved in a horrific car accident, killing him instantly. 

Tellingly, the wide awake team management wasted little time leaning towards the equally dangerous steady fullback, one Anton ‘Alacatz’ Kurivera, to fill the void. The tireless defender 

grabbed the opportunity with both hands, cementing his place in the starting line-up to the extent that he made the number two jersey his personal property. 

Admittedly, many strikers and forwards including the author dreaded coming face to face with the aggressive tight marking fullback. Resolute in defending and excellent space recovery, ‘Alacatz’ was a mean tackler and could irritatingly stick to his opponents like lice, indeed the kind of defender any football coach would love to have in their starting line-up at any given time. 

The hard galloping tireless fullback with the lion heart, defying his pocket size frame went on to write his name in the folklore of domestic football, winning multiple titles with the Kings of Knockout Cups in a marathon playing career that uninterruptedly stretched almost to a pair of solid decades, certainly no mean feat. 

History reveals that BA always had great overlapping fullbacks, a stronghold of their traditional style of play. Malaka Somseb, Vossie van Wyk, Bigman Schultz, Asia Tjetjinda, and big John van Wyk, all operated on the white-chalk at different intervals during their remarkable lodging at the exciting Gemengde outfit. 

Bro ‘Alacatz’ almost won all available silverware there was to be won in domestic football including the coveted Mainstay Cup on no less than one occasion, league title and many other high profile accolades. He will be best remembered for persuading his boyhood buddy and former schoolmate, deadly midfielder Joseph ‘Mombakkies’ Eiseb, to join forces with BA. 

The latter went on to establish him as a vital cog in the star-studded BA midfield and was amongst the very first truly indigenous footballers to represent the then apartheid South West Africa (SWA - Namibia), in the prestigious South African Inter- Provincial Currie Cup tourney back-to-back in 1979, and 1980, respectively. 

Regrettably, Independence came a bit too late for many talented local athletes including Bro ‘Alacatz’, who could have easily gone on to parade their football skills and God given talent proudly on foreign soil had it happened way before entering the sunset of their amazing football careers. Gone but not forget, Bro ‘Alacatz’, you will remain an unsung hero in the history of Namibian football. You have certainly served the game with distinction….May your soul rest in eternal peace. 

2023-07-07  Carlos Kambaekwa

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